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Sears Shares Surge 6% As Eddie Lampert Keeps Company Afloat With Credit

From Embattled retail giant Sears Holdings Corp (NASDAQ:SHLD) saw its shares bounce considerably off multi-year lows this morning after securing $200 million in credit from CEO Eddie Lampert, who is also the company’s largest shareholder.

Without the new credit line, Sears likely would have faced bankruptcy, or at least much worse terms from a creditor willing to take a major risk to finance its operations. From Bloomberg:

The company has a secured letter of credit that could be expanded by as much as $300 million with the consent of lenders, according to a statement Thursday. Affiliates of ESL Investments Inc., a firm run by Sears Chief Executive Officer Eddie Lampert, is providing the funding through Citigroup Inc.

Over the past eight years, SHLD has posted a total net loss of $9.35 billion as it continues to lose out to online retailers, as well as newer brick-and-mortar competitors like Target and Kohl’s.

The company’s CFO, Jason Hollar, noted Sears still has “numerous options” for financing. But that’s tough to believe, considering its poor performance and the fact that it had to turn to its own CEO as a last resort credit option.

Sears shares were trading at $8.67 per share on Thursday morning, up $0.49 (+5.99%). Year-to-date, SHLD has declined -57.83%, versus an +11.39% rise in the benchmark S&P 500 index during the same period.

SHLD currently has an POWR Rating of D (Sell), and is ranked #30 of 37 stockss in the Specialty Retailers category.

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