December 27, 2011
Although we don't believe in timing the market or panicking over market movements, we do like to keep an eye on big changes -- just in case they're material to our investing thesis.
What: Shares of Sears Holdings (Nasdaq: SHLD ) were relegated from the clearance rack to a back-alley garage sale today, falling 25% after management said it would close up to 120 stores.
So what: The struggling retailer has seen Kmart sales fall 4.4% quarter to date and Sears domestic sales fall 6%, finally causing management to throw in the towel. The company said it would close 100 to 120 Kmart and Sears stores to reduce costs and attempt to generate revenue from the real estate.
Now what: Kmart and Sears have both lost any luster they once had after Eddie Lampert took over the combined company. The plan to sell or lease the real estate may generate some cash, but with brick-and-mortar retailers struggling, I don't see much demand for the spaces that will become available. I would abandon Sears at all costs and stick to stronger retailers like Target (NYSE: TGT ) and Wal-Mart (NYSE: WMT ) as we head into 2012.
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