Hoffman Estates, IL— Sears Holdings is once again being dogged by rumors much like JCPenney was a year ago. Today, in a report on Seeking Alpha, a Wall Street site, the retailer evidently is planning to lay off more than 6,000 employees and closing 110 stores.
The report said that many of the closings would occur prior to Christmas. But Sears blasted the accounted and said it would provide an updated store count when it releases its third quarter earnings next month.
Sears Spokesperson Howard Riefs said, “The reported store count and list of closures isn’t accurate.” He specified that one of the stores on the list of closings, a Sears and Auto Center at Washington Square Mall in Evansville, Ind., is not slated to close.
Seeking Alpha reporter Mitch Nolen, who wrote the report, said in an email that he has corrected that entry and that the Sears at Washington Square Mall in Indianapolis is closing, not in Evansville. Riefs did not indicate any other inaccuracies in the report.
In August, Sears revealed that it planned to close about 130 stores during this fiscal but it may close more. So far 96 stores closed in the first half.
The Seeking Alpha report cited liquidation notices, news reports and employees, in an updated post Thursday afternoon listed 55 Kmart stores, 30 Sears stores and 31 Sears Auto Centers that are slated to close between September and mid-January. Those stores have an estimated 6,067 employees.
Sears had 1,077 Kmart stores and 793 Sears stores in the United States as of Aug. 2. At the same time last year, the retailer had 1,195 Kmart stores and 841 domestic Sears stores. The company had 226,000 U.S. employees as of Feb. 1, down from 246,000 a year earlier and 290,000 in 2010.