(Stock prices updated at the close.)

NEW YORK (

TheStreet

) -- Retail investors seem to have confused its winners from its losers.

The retail sector rallied on Tuesday, and the S&P Retail Index ended the day up 2% to 354.64, lifted by some better-than-expected earnings reports from retailers. Despite posting lower quarterly profit, shares of both

Saks

(SKS)

and

Target

(TGT) - Get Report

soared on surprise earnings reports. Meanwhile,

TJX

(TJX) - Get Report

,

the only company that posted gains in sales and profit

and raised its guidance, saw shares slide on a weaker fourth-quarter outlook.

Granted, what's going to happen is more important than what already has, but neither Target or Saks appear to be on the path to recovery.

Saks said it widened its quarterly loss

and saw double-digit decline in same-store-sales, but the loss was not as big as analysts expected, and shares jumped 7% to close at $5.72.

Similarly,

Target reported its eight consecutive profit decline

, but results were better-than-forecast, and shares skyrocketed 7.5% to $44.32.

Shares of TJX slipped 3% to end at $34.33, after the off-price retailer posted glimmering second-quarter results, but said fourth-quarter earnings, which include the holiday season, will be lower than what analysts expect.

Other notable movers included

J.Crew

( JCG), which jumped 8% to $30.37 after an analyst upgraded the company to outperform from market perform. BMO Capital Markets analyst John Morris said the company is laying the groundwork for a strong long-term performance partly on signs that its fall merchandise is off to a good start.

Stein Mart

(SMRT) - Get Report

rose 6% to $11.15 and

Jones Apparel

(JNY)

climbed 6% to close at $14.96.

-- Reported by Jeanine Poggi in New York.

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