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3 Stock Charts That Will Make Your Skin Crawl

By John Maxfield - Mar 8, 2014 at 3:00PM

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Want to see a handful of horrible-looking stock charts? It's hard to find three that are worse than those of RadioShack, Office Depot, and J.C. Penney.


Source: bevangoldswain/iStock/Thinkstock.

The Internet's assault on traditional retail stores will soon claim three more victims -- or, at least, that's what the following stock charts seem to suggest.

1. RadioShack
Let's start with RadioShack (NYSE: RSH). Since peaking at $90.56 a share in the middle of 1999, the retailer's stock has dropped 97.6% -- or 94.1% on a dividend and split-adjusted basis.

RSH Total Return Price Chart

RSH Total Return Price data by YCharts

And things could get worse from here. On Tuesday, RadioShack said it will close up to 1,100 stores. That amounts to nearly a fifth of its current fleet.

The decision was triggered by a particularly difficult holiday season. "Our fourth-quarter financial results were driven by a holiday season characterized by lower store traffic, intense promotional activity particularly in consumer electronics, a very soft mobility marketplace, and a few operational issues," said CEO Joseph Magnacca.

2. Office Depot
The second company that appears to be hanging on for dear life is Office Depot ( ODP -2.08% ). The retailer has come under pressure over the past decade as its customers migrated online for their office-supply needs.

ODP Total Return Price Chart

ODP Total Return Price data by YCharts

To a certain extent, these dynamics have helped competitor Staples, which adapted better and currently gets around 50% of its sales online. Office Depot, on the other hand, was slower to recognize and respond to the new paradigm.

Of late, it's chosen instead to merge with OfficeMax. Will this move be successful? That remains to be seen. But by the looks of Office Depot's stock chart, investors aren't optimistic. Since topping out in May of 2006, its shares are off by 89.6%.

3. J.C. Penney
Finally, J.C. Penney ( JCPN.Q ) rounds out three of this year's most downright terrible stock charts.

JCP Total Return Price Chart

JCP Total Return Price data by YCharts

The Texas-based retailer's travails are well documented. In 2011, it hired Ron Johnson, the former head of Apple's retail stores, to breathe new life into the J.C. Penney brand. But Johnson did the opposite by abandoning the company's discount-based business model and thereby alienating its core customers.

Johnson was fired two years later and replaced by the CEO he ousted, Mike Ullman. As you can see by the stock chart, Ullman has his hands full.

This article represents the opinion of the writer, who may disagree with the “official” recommendation position of a Motley Fool premium advisory service. We’re motley! Questioning an investing thesis – even one of our own – helps us all think critically about investing and make decisions that help us become smarter, happier, and richer.

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Stocks Mentioned

J. C. Penney Company, Inc. Stock Quote
J. C. Penney Company, Inc.
JCPN.Q
The ODP Corporation Stock Quote
The ODP Corporation
ODP
$38.07 (-2.08%) $0.81

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