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Sears Still Sinking, But Burlington Revenues Rise in Q2


Sears Holdings

Sears Holdings (SHLD) is, at this point, postponing the inevitable. The company’s net loss ballooned to $395 million in its second quarter ended July 30, as comparable store sales at Kmart and Sears Domestic declined 3.3% and 7 percent respectively. As a result, revenues fell from last year’s $6.2 billion to $5.7 billion, though the company put part of the blame on the fact that less full-line stores were in operation this year. In fact, things were so bad last quarter that Sears Holdings was forced to accept a $300 million loan from ESL Investments, CEO Eddie Lampert’s hedge fund. The company’s stock fell 2.52% in early morning trading Thursday and it’s down 30.3% year-to-date. No stores closings were announced.


Another day, another off-price retailer knocking it out of the park. Burlington Stores (BURL) said Thursday that net sales in the second quarter increased 9.7% to $1.3 billion, thanks to a 5.4% increase in sales at stores open for at least a year, while new and non-comparable stores contributed $51.8 million. Net income jumped 87.1% to $20.4 million or 28 cents per diluted share, compared with $10.9 million a year ago. Based on its strong first-half performance, Burlington raised its full-year outlook and said it now expects net sales to rise by 7.8% to 8.3% and comps to increase between 3.6% and 4.1%. The company will open 25 new stores in the second half of the year.


Australian surf company Billabong International posted a 4.6% increase in revenue to reach 1.1 billion Australian dollars ($837.6 million) in the year ended June 30, as business picked up in Europe (8.4%), the Americas (6.5%) and Asia Pacific (1 percent). On a constant currency basis, however, sales were down 1.4%. The group, which owns Billabong, Element and RVCA, among others, blamed increased income tax charges for its net loss of 23.7 million Australian dollars ($18 million). By comparison, the group posted a net profit of 4.2 million Australian dollars ($3.2 million) a year ago.

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