More than two years ago, I told a couple of neighbors they would soon seen the fall of Sears. J.C. Penny was also going to fall. Half of my prophecy has come true – Sears is starting to crumple.
Sears has been on a downward spiral almost since the day it merged with Kmart in 2005. And that plunge seems to be picking up speed.
The company said this week that it may sell its 51% stake in Sears Canada, which operates nearly 20% of the company’s stores worldwide. It has quietly closed nearly 100 U.S. stores in the last year. Next week, it’s expected to announce dismal fiscal first quarter results and possibly yet more store closings. “They have too many stores and they’re losing a lot of money, burning cash,” said John Kernan, an analyst with Cowen. Kernan expects the company to close 500 of its 1,980 U.S. stores in a few years and, ultimately, to go out of business.
So, I am keeping a very close eye on my local Sears store. It is in a relatively small mall, and if it folds, can the mall be far behind. My town only has this one mall, so shoppers will have to travel out-of-town for their goodies.
Watch you local newspapers very carefully for the “Close=Outs” signs.
As I watch the death throes, I’ll want to grab up as many bargains as I can. Heartless? No, I just want a larger TV.
J.C. Penny’s is next.
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