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Sears Posts Deeper Loss, Open Thanksgiving A.M.


Sears Holdings reported
deeper losses and lower sales year on year in its
fiscal third quarter, ended Oct. 30.

Net losses in the quarter were $218 million, higher
than the prior year’s $127 million. Total revenues for
the quarter were down $512 million, to $9.7 billion,
from the prior year’s $10.2 billion.

The decline in total revenue for the quarter was primarily
a result of a 4.8 percent decrease in domestic
comp-store sales and the effect of having fewer Kmart
and Sears full-line stores in operation.

Sears Domestic sales were $5.142 billion in the
quarter compared with the prior year’s $5.507 billion.
The operating loss was $271 million for the quarter,
compared with an operating loss of $123 million in the
prior year.

For Kmart sales were $3.381 billion, compared with
$3.476 billion in the prior year. The operating loss was
$56 million in the quarter, compared with an operating
loss of $72 million last year.

The domestic comp-store sales decrease included
declines of 0.7 percent at Kmart and 8.2 percent at
Sears Domestic.

Kmart’s quarterly decrease in comp-store sales was
partially offset by increases in consumer electronics,
among other categories.

Sears Domestic’s sales decline was primarily driven by declines
in home appliances and consumer electronics, among
other categories, which had greater decreases in October.

The decline in sales of home appliances primarily resulted
from overall softness in the appliance market, a lower
average selling price realized during the quarter and the
effects of delays in transition to new Kenmore products
during the quarter.

Just prior to releasing its fiscal third quarter report Sears
announced it would open for the first time on Thanksgiving
morning nationwide, from 7 am to 12 noon.

Sears said in a statement explaining the move, “In balancing
its commitment to meeting customer needs with its commitment
to associates, Sears decided to be open for limited
hours on Thanksgiving and, where practical, to fill the schedules
with associates who volunteered to work that day and
seasonal associates. Given the tough economic times many folks are facing, Sears has seen demand from associates
who want the opportunity to supplement their usual income
with the holiday pay premium.”

David Friedman, senior VP and marketing president,
Sears Holdings, said, “We are always listening to our
customers to make their shopping experience easier, and
now, by being open on Thanksgiving, they can start their
shopping early or pick up last-minute items needed for
their Thanksgiving celebration.”