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Sears stock (Nasdaq: SHLD) slumped 4% in premarket trading this morning (Thursday) before announcing financial results for its first quarter, which ended May 3.
Overall, Sears posted a loss of $2.24 per share, vastly widening from Q1 2013's loss of $1.29 per share. The numbers were way off from analysts' more optimistic expectations of a projected loss of $1.91 per share. Revenue fell 6.8% to $7.88 billion.
"Sears is undergoing a significant transformation, and we fundamentally are changing the way we do business," Sears Holdings Corp. Chairman and Chief Executive Officer Edward S. Lampert said in a press release this morning. "Our performance in the first quarter highlights the challenges we are facing as well as the progress we are making in this transformation. We are moving away from a company that was heavily based on selling products solely through a store-based network to a member-centric business model focused on providing benefits to our members anytime and anyplace."
Despite Lampert's careful, positive spin on his company's Q1 results, the market reacted negatively to the news.
Sears stock traded at $35.21, a 3.69% loss as of 11:15 a.m. EDT on Thursday. Shares are down 39.52% over the last 12 months, 28.02% year to date, and 19.42% so far in May.
Not much has changed in recent years for the retailer, which merged with Kmart in 2005.
In January 2012, Money Morning Chief Investment Strategist Keith Fitz-Gerald placed Sears stock on a "death watch" in an interview with FOX Business' Stuart Varney.
"The bet about Sears has never been about retailing. The play here for years has been Sears as a land bank," Fitz-Gerald said. "But real estate is in the toilet and no amount of new merchandising can help offset [Sears' losses]."
In November 2013, we reported on slipping Sears stock value and volatile trading when it reported a third-quarter revenue of $8.27 billion, down from $8.85 billion the year prior and short of analyst expectations.
Earlier this month on May 13, we watched Sears stock drop 3% on news that the company would sell 51% of its Canadian subsidiary.
You see, today's earnings are just another "nail in the coffin" in a long line of hits to SHLD stock – in fact, they mark 28 straight quarters of revenue drops for the retailer.
Here's why investors should continue to steer clear of this "death watch" stock…