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Sears Continues Tumble After Land’s End Spin-Off

Trey Thoelcke

Sears Holdings Corp. (SHLD) continues to drop after completing its spin-off of Lands' End Inc. (LE), which began trading Monday on the Nasdaq.

Sears Holdings has long struggled with weak top-line performance and even weaker bottom-line results. So to enhance liquidity and improve operating performance, the company has focused on shedding parts of the company that no longer contribute significantly to growth. Such divestitures include the spin-off of its Orchard Supply Hardware Stores unit in 2011 and the Sears Hometown and Outlet business in 2012. But it seems that as more parts of the once-iconic retailer company disappear, the less investors feel it is worth.

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Sears acquired Lands' End back in 2002 for about $1.9 billion, but it was an uncomfortable fit from the beginning. Lands' End customers tended to be more affluent than Sears customers, who did not care for the preppy-casual look that typified Lands' End. The market value of Lands' End is now about $1 billion. And the stock's performance so far suggests shareholders are not particularly interested in holding the former Sears subsidiary either.

Shares of Sears dropped about 6.3% Monday, and they were down 4.2% in late morning trading Tuesday to $36.50. They have traded in a range of $26.62 to $54.70 in the past year. In addition, Sears was one of the retailers closing the most stores.

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Lands' End shares ended their first day of regular trading about 6.7% lower. They were down more than 8% at one point in morning trading Tuesday to $26.77.

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