Share “Sears 3rd-quarter net loss widens”

Sears 3rd-quarter net loss widens

Associated Press Modified: November 15, 2012 at 5:45 pm •  Published: November 15, 2012

Revenue dropped nearly 6 percent to $8.86 billion. Sales in stores open at least one year fell 1.6 percent at U.S. Sears stores and 4.8 percent at Kmart stores. Stronger sales of clothing and appliances were offset by weak sales of groceries, household products and consumer electronics.

Costs of sales, buying and occupancy, as well as selling and administrative expenses, were both down for the quarter. Inventory fell $1.4 billion to $8.6 billion at Oct. 27.

The company completed the spinoff of part of its stake in Sears Canada Inc. on Wednesday. It also recently spun off its Sears Hometown and Outlet Stores Inc.

Since May Sears has invested heavily in improving the customer experience at its stores, with changes such as improved displays and iPads for sales staff to research products and help customers check out wherever they are in the store.

It has also increased services like ordering online with in-store pick up and shipping in-store orders home. D'Ambrosio said half of all online sales now include an interaction with another channel.

But the changes so far haven't been enough to offset a steep decline in sales, as customers turn online and elsewhere to make purchases.

Shares fell $3.81, or 6.5 percent, to $54.67 in aftermarket trading. They ended the regular session up 6 cents at $58.48. The stock is trading near the middle of its 52-week range. It reached its low of $26.90 on Jan. 5 and peaked at $79.99 on March 16.