) -- It was a winning day for the retail sector, as some surprise earnings reports sent shares rallying.

The S&P Retail Index inched up 0.7% to close at 369.69, lifted by better-than-expected earnings results at

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Dollar Tree

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Williams-Sonoma soared 11% to end the day at $17.19, after it posted a surprise profit. The home furnishings retailer said earnings fell to $399,000, or break even, compared with $18.4 million, or 17 cents a share, in the year-ago period.

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Excluding items, the company actually earned 5 cents a share, better than the loss of 9 cents forecast by analysts.

Shoe store DSW also received a boost after it upped its full-year outlook despite reporting a 31% drop in second-quarter earnings.

The company now expects full-year earnings in the range of 37 cents to 45 cents a share, up from prior guidance of 30 cents to 35 cents a share.

Shares of DSW jumped 7% to end the day at $15.

Dollar Tree sold enough of its $1 merchandise to see its second-quarter profit more than double and raise its full-year guidance, sending shares up 4.5% to close at $50.13.


99 Cents Only Stores

( NDN) also rose 3.5% to close at $14.01 and

Family Dollar Stores


jumped 3.5% to $30.82.

Other gainers included

American Eagle Outfitters

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, which grew almost 2% to $14.58 a day ahead of its second-quarter earnings release.

-Reported by Jeanine Poggi in New York.

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