Macy's Request for Restraining Order Denied by Judge

NEW YORK (AP) -- A New York Appellate judge has rejected Macy's (NYSE: M  ) request to slap rival J.C. Penney (NYSE: JCP  ) with a temporary restraining order barring it from selling non-branded goods designed by Martha Stewart while an appeal is pending.

On Monday, rival Macy's filed an appeal to overturn a decision made by New York State Supreme Court Judge Jeffrey Oing on Friday. That decision had allowed Penney to sell home products under the label JCP Everyday until a lawsuit that Macy's is waging against Penney and Martha Stewart Living Omnimedia (NYSE: MSO  ) is decided.

Macy's, based in Cincinnati, had argued that the JCP Everyday products violate its long-standing exclusive agreement with Martha Stewart in certain products like bedding and cookware.

Thursday's decision made by New York Appeals Judge Richard Andrias offers Penney a short-term reprieve until an appellate panel of five judges makes the decision on that issue. The ruling is expected late next week.

A temporary order made last summer by Oing still bars Penney of Plano, Texas, from selling Martha Stewart-branded goods in the exclusive categories.

The development is the latest in a heated court battle that started late February over the two department stores' partnership with Martha Stewart.

In afternoon trading, Macy's shares declined 55 cents to $43.06. J.C. Penney shares added 26 cents to $15.03.


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