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Why in the World Are Shares of Sears Moving Higher Today?

By Daniel Miller - Oct 26, 2017 at 4:58PM

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Shares of Sears Holdings are up 5% Thursday, and part of the reason could be optimism with its Wish Book relaunch ahead of the holiday season.

What happened?

Shares of Sears Holdings Corp (SHLDQ), a struggling retailer that provides home merchandise, apparel, and automotive products, among other items, are making a rare 5% move higher Thursday partially driven by recent news about its Wish Book relaunch.

So what

It's easy to forget, but this will be the first time in six years that Sears will launch its catalog known as the Wish Book to try to capitalize on sales during the upcoming holiday season. "We heard story after story about the Wish Book and about peoples' memories,'' said Kelly Cook, chief marketing officer for Sears and Kmart, according to USA Today. Shoppers "wanted it back, but also wanted a feature that would allow their children to share lists as they're constantly using their phones and tablets to browse the Web and engage with brands.''

While the news that Sears is going the extra mile to connect with consumers during a critical season is a net positive for investors, the truth is we are far removed from the days of the original Sears Christmas Book when catalogs were a must-have for families across the nation.

Inside a home appliance store with dishwashers shown

Image source: Getty Images.

Now what

Even beyond eroding relevance for catalogs, investors have to accept that even a successful catalog relaunch during the holiday season isn't likely to save the struggling retailer. Sears recently lost its largest outside investor and stopped carrying the No. 1 appliance brand. Chalk today's move up partially to investor optimism surrounding Sears' effort for the upcoming holiday, but also chalk it up to a company that has fallen so far -- currently a market cap of only $651 million -- that the stock will simply move up and down 5% to 10% on no news at all.

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