M&S was buoyed by strong trial sales of food at BP Connect forecourts, and a clothes ad featuring Twiggy and Laura Bailey.
However, George Davies, head of M&S's Per Una womenswear label, resigned over a contractual dispute just hours after CEO Stuart Rose announced a breakthrough in negotiations.
Sainsbury's also gained ground, rising to fourth after reporting a third consecutive quarter of like-for-like sales growth.
British Airways soared to fifth spot. Passenger numbers grew in September to 3.2 million, a three per cent year-on-year increase.
Bank of Credit and Commerce International hit the bottom five after liquidator Deloitte failed to persuade the Bank of England to settle an £850m lawsuit. Deloitte claims the BofE failed to properly supervise the bank.
Cable & Wireless came bottom as it forecast a six per cent drop in UK first-half revenue, wiping almost £500m off the firm's value.
Reputation Monitor is compiled from Thomson Intermedia's National News Index, a measure of media sentiment that excludes stock market reports and passing mentions.