Edward Lampert

Last Update: 11-15-2016

Number of Stocks: 10
Number of New Stocks: 0

Total Value: $882 Mil
Q/Q Turnover: 0%

Countries: USA
Details: Top Buys | Top Sales | Top Holdings  Embed:

Edward Lampert Watch

  • Sears CEO Eddie Lampert of ESL Investments Sells 4 Portfolio Stocks

    Eddie Lampert raised approximately $75 million selling stocks from his hedge fund’s portfolio in the third quarter. It is unknown whether any of the proceeds went toward a $300 loan he made to his struggling retailer Sears Holdings (NASDAQ:SHLD) in September, but he also spent nothing on new investments or increases to existing positions over the period.


    Since taking over as CEO in 2013, Lampert has made several loans to the company he has described in his blog as “a membership-focused, integrated retailer in the process of transforming from a traditional retail company,” since its creation in 2005 through the combining of Sears and Kmart. Sears has seen a 7.9% annual rate of revenue decline in the past five years and has not produced a profit since 2012.

      


  • Guru and Insider Invests in Lands' End

    Edward Lampert (Trades, Portfolio), insider and 10% owner of Lands’ End (NASDAQ:LE), purchased 412,294 shares in eight separate transactions on eight separate days, according to the Securities and Exchange Commission.


      


  • Insiders Roundup: Facebook, FedEx

    The All-in-One Screener can be used to find insider buys and sells over the last week by clicking on the Insiders tab and changing the settings for All Insider Buying to “$200,000+” duration to "August 2016” and “August 2016” and All Insider Sales to “$5,000,000+”.


    According to the above filters, the following are recent buys and sells from company insiders in the past week.

      


  • Bruce Berkowitz Leans Toward Lands’ End

    Bruce Berkowitz (Trades, Portfolio) of Fairholme Capital Management increased his position in Lands’ End Inc. (NASDAQ:LE) by 11.8% on Sept. 30.


    Berkowitz founded Fairholme Capital Management in 1997. He manages a concentrated portfolio in companies that have great management, generate free cash flow and are undervalued. He also will invest in mediocre companies that are trading at a significant discount to their intrinsic values but also have potential catalysts.

      


  • Lands’ End CEO Steps Down

    Federica Marchionni, CEO of Lands’ End Inc. (NASDAQ:LE), announced she was stepping down on Monday. Her resignation marks the departure of the company's second CEO since it diverged from Sears Holdings Corp. (NASDAQ:SHLD) in 2014.


    Marchionni has been with the clothing manufacturer since February 2015. A former executive at Ferrari and Dolce & Gabbana, she arrived with the vision of transforming the company, known for its outdoorsy apparel, to a more fashion forward brand. She added slimmer-fitting clothing, stiletto heels and a new line of athletic wear to the company’s product line. These efforts have not resonated well with loyal customers.

      


  • Sears Holdings Reports Steep Loss, Takes Loan From Lampert in Q2

    Sears Holdings reported a second-quarter earnings loss Thursday as it continues to pursue its strategy of “transformation” under leadership of well-known hedge fund manager Eddie Lampert.


    Sears had a net loss of $395 million and $3.70 per diluted share, compared to net earnings of $208 million and $1.84 for the second quarter last year. The losses came as the struggling retailer witnessed comparable store sales decline by 3.3% at Kmart and 7% at Sears Domestic.

      


  • Edward Lampert Adds 2 Companies to Portfolio in 2nd Quarter

    Edward Lampert (Trades, Portfolio), founder of RBS Partners LP and chairman of Sears Holdings Corp. (NASDAQ:SHLD), invested in two stocks – Seagate Technology Inc. (NASDAQ:STX) and Fossil Group Inc. (NASDAQ:FOSL) – in the second quarter that are new to his portfolio.


    Lampert’s portfolio reflected transactions in five stocks during the quarter.

      


  • Gap Closes In on Its P/S Ratio 10-year Low

    Gap Inc. (NYSE:GPS) is traded at a P/S ratio of 0.57, close to its 10-year low of 0.46. The company is owned by 10 gurus.


    Gap has a market cap of $8.31 billion; its shares were traded around $20.88 with a P/E ratio of 10.57 and P/S ratio of 0.57. Gap's trailing 12-month dividend yield is 4.42%. The forward dividend yield is 4.46%. Gap had an annual average earnings growth of 10.40% over the past 10 years. GuruFocus rated Gap the business predictability rank of 4-star.

      


  • Edward Lampert Reduces 3 Stakes in 1st Quarter

    Edward Lampert (Trades, Portfolio) of RBS Partners LP reduced three stakes in his portfolio in the first quarter.


    Lampert trimmed his stake in AutoNation Inc. (NYSE:AN), a Fort Lauderdale, Florida-based auto retailer, by more than 10%. Lampert sold 698,053 shares for an average price of $48.57 per share. The transaction had a -2.86% impact on Lampert’s portfolio.

      


  • Gap May Be Poised for a Comeback

    Gap (NYSE:GPS) is one of the most iconic American brands and still has a solid economic moat. The company has been downsizing and closing stores, making room for cash to be deployed into higher-profit channels like ecommerce.


    It ended the first quarter with 3,794 company-operated and franchise store locations with almost 38 million square feet of retail space covering well-known brands like Banana Republic, Old Navy, Athleta, Gap and Gap Kids.

      


  • Sears Holdings to Close 78 Kmart, Sears Stores

    Sears Holdings (NASDAQ:SHLD), the Hoffman Estates, Illinois-based owner of retail store brands Sears and Kmart, announced Thursday that it will close 78 stores – 68 Kmart stores in 26 states and 10 Sears stores in eight states – in the next five months.


    All of the Sears stores and all but two of the Kmart stores will close by late July, Sears Holdings announced. Two Kmart stores – in Taylor, Michigan, and Lorain, Ohio – will close in September. In selecting which stores to shut down, the company said it considered stores’ historical and recent performances and the timing of lease expirations.

      


  • CEO and 10% Owner of Sears Holdings Invests in Company

    Edward Lampert (Trades, Portfolio) (Insider Trades), CEO and 10% owner of Sears Holdings Corp. (SHLD), bought 57,261 shares of the company on April 11. The average price per share was $14.34, for a total transaction of $821,123.


    The company is a retailer focused on connecting the digital and physical shopping experiences. Sears Holdings is home to Shop Your Way, a social shopping platform that offers members rewards for shopping at Sears and Kmart, as well as other retail partners.

      


  • AutoNation Is a Buy for Patient Value Investors

    “The intelligent investor is a realist who sells to optimists and buys from pessimists” - Benjamin Graham


    There are certainly plenty of pessimists about AutoNation Inc. (NYSE:AN), as shares have sold off the past year from $65 to about $48 today. Are the pessimists correct and is the drop justified? Or is this an opportunity for a realist to buy from those pessimists and benefit later when sentiment changes?

      


  • Eddie Lampert Comments on Tesla

    Some innovative companies like Tesla (NASDAQ:TSLA) are heavily subsidized by government policy (either directly or through purchases made by their customers) while existing car companies are forced to comply with mandates to produce cars that people may not want at enormous cost. These companies rely heavily on continued financing (Tesla raised over $1 billion in equity and over $2.5 billion in debt over the past four years) and favorable capital market conditions and valuations while companies viewed through a more traditional lens, like Sears Holdings, are met with skepticism even though we have an enormous asset base and a proven history of monetizing these assets and raising additional capital to fund our obligations and transformation.

    From Edward Lampert (Trades, Portfolio)'s 2015 annual letter for Sears Holdings.   


  • Eddie Lampert Comments on Amazon

    Companies like Amazon (NASDAQ:AMZN) were able to grow rapidly without having to collect sales tax, while traditional retail companies had the dual disadvantages of having to report profits and to collect sales tax from their customers. While it is true that Amazon’s customers, by law, were required to calculate and pay sales tax in states that required it, many commentators conveniently ignored these laws in their coverage of Amazon and the state and local authorities did little to enforce the existing laws. The consequence? We are now seeing more and more retail stores shut down and the tax base of many municipalities eroding due to the hollowing out of the sales tax base as the Wall Street Journal recently reported. Even the largest and most successful retailers, like Walmart, are shuttering stores all over the world.

    From Edward Lampert (Trades, Portfolio)'s 2015 annual letter for Sears Holdings.   


  • Eddie Lampert's 2015 Letter

    February 25, 2016


    To Our Shareholders, Associates and Members:

      


  • Widely Undervalued Stocks Trading Below Peter Lynch Value

    According to GuruFocus' All-in-One Screener, several gurus are focusing on stocks whose Peter Lynch fair value is far above the current price. The following stocks are trading with a wide margin of safety, and at least five gurus are shareholders.


    AutoNation Inc. (AN) is trading at about $48 per share, and the Peter Lynch value gives the stock a fair price of $87.65, giving a margin of safety of 45%. It is trading with a PE ratio of 11.90, higher than 59% of companies in the Global Auto & Truck Dealerships industry, and is currently 28.98% below its 52-week high and 18.52% above its 52-week low.

      


  • 3 Investment Opportunities Double Tapped by Insiders and Gurus

    GuruFocus has various tools and screeners available to make the quest for your next great investment a little bit more efficient. A tool of which I am fond is the Double Buy screen. By employing it you can easily screen a list of stocks that have been double tapped by both gurus and insiders. Both types of events tend to trigger my interest, but when they occur simultaneously it is time to pay close attention. I regularly review the list, and these are currently the top three stocks that come up on the screen:


    top insider buys 2.jpg

      


  • Eddie Lampert Buys IBM at Less Than Warren Buffett’s Price

    Edward Lampert (Trades, Portfolio), a Warren Buffett (Trades, Portfolio) admirer, bought a stake in IBM (NYSE:IBM), Buffett’s fourth largest position, as its share price declined in the third quarter.


    As founder and CEO of hedge fund ESL Investments, Lampert typically buys large positions in a few select companies and holds for long periods. His purchase of IBM consisted of 440,255 shares, translating to 4.07% of his portfolio.

      


  • Gap Inc. Has 50% Upside Potential

    Gap Inc. (NYSE:GPS), the iconic American brand, has experienced a very rough patch in 2015, starting the year at $42 and currently trading down 35%, under $27 per share.


    Guru investors Edward Lampert (Trades, Portfolio) (2,057,403 shares), James Barrow (Trades, Portfolio) (2,206,049 shares), and Joel Greenblatt (Trades, Portfolio) (1,022,286 shares) all own small pieces of the company. Yet, looking at the stock on a short-term basis, the financial data tells a very depressing story. Revenue growth is below the company’s five- and 10-year averages and EPS, cash flow and book value growth are all negative in the last 12 months.

      


  • Gap and Philips 66 Among Recent Insider Buys

    The All-In-One Guru Screener can be used to find insider buys over the last week by clicking on the Insiders tab and changing the settings for All Insider Buying to “$1,000,000+” and duration to "August 2015."


    According to the above filters, the following are the recent buys from company insiders over the last week of August.

      


  • Weekly CEO Buys Highlights: SHLD, HTZ, PAGP, DEA, ATEN

    According to GuruFocus Insider Data, these are the largest CEO buys during the past week. The overall trend of CEOs is illustrated in the chart below:


    Sears Holdings Corp.: CEO, 10% Owner Edward S. Lampert bought 277,252 shares

      


  • Lampert's Sears Reports Smaller Net Loss, 14.5% Store Sales Decline

    HOFFMAN ESTATES, Ill., June 8, 2015 /PRNewswire/ -- Sears Holdings Corporation (NASDAQ:SHLD) today announced financial results for its first quarter ended May 2, 2015. As a supplement to this announcement, a presentation, pre-recorded conference and audio webcast are available at our website http://searsholdings.com/invest.


    In summary, we reported:

      


  • Lampert, Berkowitz, and The Love Affair With Sears Holdings

    In November 2004, Edward Lampert (Trades, Portfolio) was dubbed “The Next Warren Buffett (Trades, Portfolio)” by BusinessWeek (pre-Bloomberg), and from 1988 to 2008 he earned nearly 30% a year for investors. Since then, his largest investment, the retailer Sears Holdings (NASDAQ:SHLD) has been dead money, absolutely crushing Lampert’s long-term rate of compound returns, which are more in the 15% to 19% annualized range now.


    Sears Holdings Versus S&P 500

      


  • Sears Holdings Restructuring Its Business Strategy For A Better Investor Future

    The way Sears Holdings’ (NASDAQ:SHLD) has started the creation of an extensive portfolio of real estate acquisitions, news of a joint venture comes as the next logical step in order to tap into the true value of their portfolio. Sears Holdings and Simon Property Inc. (NYSE:SPG) have announced their joint venture on Monday.


    As per the terms of the joint venture, Sears will contribute 10 properties located in Simon Property malls, which are Indianapolis based, to the partnership valued at $228 million. In return, Sears Holdings will get $114 million in cash and a 50% stake in the JV with Simon Property paying $114 million in cash to the newly formed Joint Venture and receiving the other 50% of stakes in the JV. In addition, Simon Properties will purchase a Sears Holdings property in McAllen, Texas, at the La Plaza mall.

      


  • Sears Holdings Chairman's Letter for 2014 – Eddie Lampert

    February 26, 2015


    To our Shareholders, Associates and Members,

      


  • Edward Lampert's Recent Buys

    Lampert is the founder of RBS Partners, L.P., a private investment company, and the chairman of Sears Holdings Corporation (SHLD). Since starting RBS Partners, L.P. in 1988 at the age of 25, he has racked up returns averaging 29% a year. He is #68 on the list of Forbes 400 Richest Americans.


    Web Page:http://www.searsholdings.com/invest/

      


  • Bruce Berkowitz Reduced Stake In One Of The Largest Broadline Retailers In The U.S.

    Bruce Berkowitz (Trades, Portfolio) is the founder and the managing member of the Fairholme Fund (Trades, Portfolio). The investor reported decreasing his stake in Sears Holdings Corp (NASDAQ:SHLD) on March 16, according to GuruFocus Real Time Picks.


    Berkowitz is the largest shareholder of Sears Holdings, which upped its stake by 5% on the quarter to 26.54 million shares held as of the end of 2014. But now, with the transaction, Berkowitz’s position decreased by 0.16% to 26,498,973 shares. The fund initiated a position more than five years ago, and during 2014 Berkowitz added the stake to reach 26,545,273 million shares at the end of the fourth quarter of 2014, worth $875.46 million.

      


  • Eddie Lampert's 2015 Chairman Letter for Sears

    February 26, 2015


    To our Shareholders, Associates and Members,

      


  • Edward Lampert Shifts Investment Gears in Fourth Quarter

    Guru Edward Lampert (Trades, Portfolio) adjusted his investment approach in the fourth quarter of 2014. In the third quarter, he sold but did not buy stock. In the fourth quarter, he bought three stocks and sold none.


    Although Lampert is chairman and CEO of Sears Holdings Corp (NASDAQ:SHLD), which has been struggling, he has a solid track record as an investor. Since founding RBS Partners, L.P. in 1988, he has logged average annual returns of 29%.

      


  • Sears and Seven-Foot Hurdles

    A few weeks back I came across an article that someone had posted on Sears. It is a fascinating read for a few different reasons. One, I think Sears is an excellent case study of the retail industry and the difficulties of investing and allocating capital in that type of business, and two, the article was written in the summer of 1988.


    This post is not a prediction of the demise of Sears, or an indictment against those who find value in the stock, it's just my own commentary on the case study and some observations I had while reading the interesting piece.

      


  • Francis Chou Trades Two Sears Spin-offs

    During the third quarter, Francis Chou (Trades, Portfolio) of Chou Associates Management made only two adjustments to the Associates Fund portfolio — both companies are spin-offs of Sears Holdings (NASDAQ:SHLD) whose insiders are purchasing the stock.


    Chou began investing as a 25-year-old when he pooled an initial investment of $51,000 from coworkers and his own funds. What makes this story unique, however, is Chou and his coworkers were telephone repairmen with Bell Canada.

      


  • Sears Holdings Corporation Provides Update on actions to generate liquidity, fund its transformation and evolve its capital structure

    HOFFMAN ESTATES, Ill., Oct. 2, 2014 /PRNewswire/ -- Sears Holdings Corporation ("Holdings," or the "Company") (NASDAQ: SHLD) today announced that the Company expects to generate up to U.S.$380 million in proceeds from its interest in Sears Canada Inc. ("Sears Canada") by earlyNovember 2014, assuming the completion of its previously announced rights offering of Sears Canada shares to the Company's stockholders and the exercise of all such rights. Of this amount, the Company expects to receive at least $168 million in mid-to-late October from the exercise of the rights distributed to them by ESL Partners, L.P. and Edward S. Lampert, Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of Holdings and Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of ESL Investments, Inc., which collectively with their affiliates own 48.5% of Holdings' outstanding common stock.


    Fairholme Capital Management, L.L.C. also has advised Holdings that it expects that certain of its clients will participate in the rights offering at levels to be determined, subject to review of the terms and conditions of the rights offering and regulatory considerations.

      


  • Edward Lampert's Sears Announces Steeper Losses

    HOFFMAN ESTATES, Ill, Aug. 21, 2014 /PRNewswire/ -- Sears Holdings Corporation (NASDAQ:SHLD) today announced financial results for its second quarter ended August 2, 2014. Net loss attributable to Holdings' shareholders was $573 million ($5.39 loss per diluted share) for the second quarter of 2014, compared to $194 million ($1.83 loss per diluted share) for the prior year second quarter. Adjusted EBITDA was $(313) million for the second quarter of 2014, compared to $(78) million in the prior year second quarter. As a supplement to this announcement, a presentation, pre-recorded conference and audio webcast are available at our website http://searsholdings.com/invest.


    "We have continued to show progress in our transformation, as demonstrated by our year-over-year increase in online and multi-channel sales, and with our member sales now representing 73% of eligible sales," said Edward S. Lampert, Sears Holdings' Chairman and Chief Executive Officer. "However, our second quarter earnings are unacceptable and we are taking steps to address our performance on several levels. This includes reducing costs as we evolve our business model, investing in our Shop Your Way and Integrated Retail customer initiatives, rationalizing our physical footprint and improving pricing and promotions. As we move through the transformation, our new programs are becoming more prominent both in how we run the company and in how we serve our members, and we are pleased with how our members are responding."

      


  • Eddie Lampert Decreases AutoNation Position Below 9% in Brisk Selling

    At one point the owner of more than 77 million AutoNation (NYSE:AN) shares, Eddie Lampert has continually shrunk the holding since 2010, filing it down to 8.98% from 9.45% of the company after selling 973,747 shares this week, according to Real Time Picks.


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  • 5-Year Lows: Pacific Coast Oil Trust, Sears Hometown & Outlet Stores Inc, Dynex Capital Inc, and Landauer Inc.

    According to GuruFocus list of 5-year lows, these Guru stocks have reached their 5-year lows: Pacific Coast Oil Trust, Sears Hometown & Outlet Stores Inc, Dynex Capital Inc, and Landauer Inc.


    Sears Hometown & Outlet Stores Inc (NAS:SHOS) Reached the 5-year Low of $21.48

      


  • GuruFocus Real Time Picks of the Week

    The following information is a highlight of the real-time guru activity we saw this week. To view more information on these gurus, check out their guru portfolios. The “Real Time Picks” reports the stock purchases and sells that Gurus have made within the prior two weeks. If a Guru makes a purchase or sell of a company in which they own a greater-than 5% stake, SEC regulations require them to report their transaction within two days. It was a quiet week in guru trades but we did see a couple of trades coming from Mario Gabelli (Trades, Portfolio) and Edward Lampert (Trades, Portfolio).

    Mario Gabelli (Trades, Portfolio)  


  • A Crash Course in Buying Spin-Offs

    Following the herd is the surest way of achieving mediocre performance. To produce superior returns, we have two options.


    First, be smarter or know more than the other guy. Howard Marks (Trades, Portfolio) refers to this as “second level thinking." For example, “Everyone thinks Apple has peaked and sales will begin to suffer. But I believe they are wrong and the company’s brand loyalty and continued innovation will generate greater-than-expected sales and profits. Therefore, I’m going to buy the stock even though the talking heads on CNBC prefer Samsung.”

      


  • Edward Lampert's Sears Holdings to Spin Off Lands' End

    Below is the Press Release from Sears Holdings.


    Sears Holdings Corporation Board of Directors Approves the Separation of its Lands' End Business and Establishes March 24, 2014 as the Record Date for the Pro-Rata Distribution of Shares of Lands' End, Inc. Common Stock

      


  • Is There a Huge Gap Between Price and Intrinsic Value?

    The Gap Inc. (NYSE:GPS) is a leading apparel specialty retailer that sells casual apparel for men, women, and children under the Gap, Old Navy, Banana Republic, Piperlime and Athleta brands. With a very broad spectrum of consumers, the company becomes the largest specialty apparel retailer in the U.S. Additionally, the company plans to open five Old Navy brand stores in China this year, so the focus in international markets is a driver for future revenues. The firm's competitors include American Eagle Outfitters Inc. (NYSE:AEO) and The TJX Companies Inc. (NYSE:TJX).


    Now, turning our attention to the future direction of the stock, let's take a look at the intrinsic value of this company and try to explain to investors the reasons why it is a good buy or not. In this article, we present a model that is by no means the be-all and end-all for valuation. The purpose is to force investors to evaluate different assumptions about growth and future prospects.

      


  • Eddie Lampert 2014 Shareholder Letter

    “Messer Hubbard and Bell want to install one of their “telephone devices” in every city. The idea is idiotic on the face of it. Furthermore, why would any person want to use this ungainly and impractical device when he can send a messenger to the telegraph office and have a clear written message sent to any large city in the United States?”


    This is an excerpt from a Western Union internal report in response to an offer from Alexander Graham Bell (inventor of the telephone) to sell his invention to Western Union for $100,000.

      


  • Eddie Lampert's Annual Sears Letter - 2014 Could Be the Year of Transformation for Sears

    February 27, 2014


    To Our Shareholders, Associates and Members:

      


  • GuruFocus Real Time Picks of the Week

    The following information is a highlight of the real-time guru activity we saw this week. To view more information on these gurus, check out their guru portfolios. The “Real Time Picks” reports the stock purchases and sells that Gurus have made within the prior two weeks. If a Guru makes a purchase or sell of a company in which they own a greater-than 5% stake, SEC regulations require them to report their transaction within two days. This week we saw notable increases in Real Time activity from Steven Cohen (Trades, Portfolio) and Edward Lampert (Trades, Portfolio) .


    Steven Cohen (Trades, Portfolio)

      


  • Letter from Sears Holdings Chairman Eddie Lampert - Are New Ideas About How Retail Is Changing Really New?

    Data about the 2013 holiday season from a wide variety of retailers is feeding a growing consensus: store traffic has decreased significantly across the industry and may never return to previous levels.1 We don’t disagree with these conclusions, but we’re not at all sure that they are new.


    In fact, we launched a major transformation of Sears (NASDAQ:SHLD) and Kmart years ago because we saw then that people had fundamentally and permanently changed how they shop as a result of the internet, social networking and mobile devices. Those changes have only intensified in recent years. That’s why we have been focusing so much of our collective efforts – and have invested such a high proportion of our company’s resources – into innovations like the Shop Your Way membership program and our buy online, pick up in store programs, which are the foundation of our Integrated Retail strategy.

      


  • Sears Holdings Provides Update on Fourth Quarter Business

    HOFFMAN ESTATES, Ill., Jan. 9, 2014 /PRNewswire/ -- Sears Holdings Corporation ("Holdings," "we," "us," "our," or the "Company") (NASDAQ:SHLD) today is providing an update on our quarter-to-date performance and financial position.


    During the quarter, we continued to proactively transform our business to a member-centric integrated retailer leveraging our Shop Your Way™ ("SYW") program and platform. As previously stated, we are transitioning from a business that has historically focused on running a store network into a business that provides and delivers value by serving its members in the manner most convenient for them: whether in store, in home or through digital devices. We are driving this transformation by investing in capabilities to enable members access to the broadest possible assortment of products and services, enhancing our membership benefits associated with SYW, developing digital and social relationships with our members, using data and analytics to make targeted offers and decisions delivered in real time and expanding our reach through Marketplace and delivery options. 

      


  • A Race Between Cost Cutting and Sales Declines – Edward Lampert Reduces Sears Holdings

    According to GuruFocus Real Time Picks, Edward Lampert made a reduction to Sears Holdings Corporation (NASDAQ:SHLD). So, two questions arise for investors: (1) What does Lampert see to reduce that position? and (2) can we see it too?

    Sears operates a network of stores with thousands of full-line and 54 specialty retail stores operating through Kmart and Sears and 475 full-line and specialty retail stores in Canada. It operates in three reportable segments: Kmart, Sears Domestic and Sears Canada.  


  • Edward Lampert Cuts Sears to Meet Redemptions, Still Confident

    Though Edward Lampert insists cutting his stake in Sears had nothing to do with a loss of faith in the company, news of the reduction sent shares plunging more than 20% this week. The hedge fund manager and chief executive of Sears Holding (NASDAQ:SHLD) cut back the scope of his ownership in the company from 55.4% to 48.4%, according to a regulatory filing released Tuesday.

    ESL Investments, the hedge fund of Lampert that is tracked by GuruFocus, retains 26,427,295 Sears shares after reducing the holding by 21.94%, or about 7,428,774 shares, from 33,856,069 shares held at the end of the third quarter. Lampert said the recent reduction was in order to distribute 7.4 million shares among clients who were withdrawing from his firm, meaning none of those reduced came from his personal holdings. Including his personal holdings, Lampert owns roughly 51.6 million Sears shares.  


  • Real-Time Reductions with Edward Lampert, Chuck Royce and Howard Marks

    According to GuruFocus Real Time Picks, three gurus just made reductions to major holdings in Anaren Inc. (ANEN), Star Bulk Carriers Corp. (NASDAQ:SBLK) and Sears Holdings Corporation (NASDAQ:SHLD). Here are the trade details:

    Guru: Edward Lampert  


  • AutoNation and the Cyclical Risk of the Auto Industry – Edward Lampert Starts Reducing

    According to GuruFocus Real Time Picks, on Nov. 29 Edward Lampert reduced his stake in AutoNation Inc. (NYSE:AN). By Sept. 2013, Lampert owned 29% of AutoNation's common shares; so what made him cut back his position three times during November?

    The company operates as an automotive retailer in the U.S. The company operates in three segments: Domestic, Import and Premium Luxury. The first segment consists of retail automotive franchises that sell new vehicles manufactured by General Motors, Ford and Chrysler. The second segment consists of retail automotive franchises that sell new vehicles manufactured by Toyota, Honda and Nissan. The last segment consists of retail automotive franchises that sell new vehicles manufactured by BMW, Lexus and Mercedes. The franchises in each segment also sell used vehicles, parts and automotive services, and automotive finance and insurance products.  


  • Eddie Lampert's Sears Reports $543 Million Net Loss in Q3

    HOFFMAN ESTATES, Ill., Nov. 21, 2013 /PRNewswire/ -- Sears Holdings Corporation (NASDAQ:SHLD) today announced financial results for its third quarter ended November 2, 2013. Net loss attributable to Holdings' shareholders was $534 million, or $5.03 loss per diluted share, compared to $498 million, or $4.70 loss per diluted share, in the prior year quarter. Adjusted EBITDA was $(286) million for the third quarter of 2013, which was within the range of our previous guidance from October 29, compared to $(172) million in the prior year quarter. As a supplement to this earnings release, please see our presentation at our website http://searsholdings.com/invest.

    "We are proactively transforming our business to a member-centric integrated retailer leveraging Shop Your Way™ ("SYW") to benefit from the changing retail landscape. We are transitioning from a business that has historically focused on running a store network into a business that provides and delivers value by serving its members in the manner most convenient for them: whether in store, in home or through digital devices," said Edward S. Lampert, Sears Holdings' Chairman and Chief Executive Officer. "We are driving this transformation by investing in capabilities to enable members access to the broadest possible assortment of products and services, enhancing our membership benefits associated with SYW, developing digital and social relationships with our members, using data and analytics to make targeted offers and decisions delivered in real time and expanding our reach through Marketplace and delivery options."  


  • Down a Billion - Lampert Sells in Review, AutoNation Update

    A man of many hats and top investor Guru Edward “Eddie” Lampert also manages his firm ESL Investments. His third quarter portfolio lists 4 stocks at a total value of $2.99 billion, down almost a billion since April 2013. His quarter-over-quarter turnover is 0%.

    Also the Sears Holdings Corporation CEO, Lampert spent a good deal of his 2013 trading time methodically reducing his involvement in the Sears spinoff, Orchard Supply Hardware, from over a million shares in the first quarter of 2013 to 158,399 shares as of May 29, 2013.  


  • Weekly 3-Year Low Highlight: EXC, RVBD, IRWD, SHOS

    According to GuruFocus list of 3-year lows, Exelon Corp, Riverbed Technology Inc, Ironwood Pharmaceuticals, and SEARS HOMETOWN have all recently reached their three year lows.

    Exelon Corp (NYSE:EXC) Reached the 3-year Low of $27.96  


  • Sears Makeover Relevant to Online Shoppers

    With a finger on the pulse of today’s shopper, Guru Edward Lampert has a gift for making retailers relevant to the ever-changing consumer. His retail re-visioning of Sears and Kmart is starting to pay off. Sears Holdings Corporation’s online businesses for Sears and Kmart grew 20% in the second quarter of 2013, year-over-year. Lampert’s brainchild, the Sears ‘Shop Your Way’ membership program, generated more than 65% of the revenues at Sears Domestic and Kmart during the second quarter, compared to around 55% in the same quarter a year ago. But despite e-commerce growth, Sears Holdings reported an operating loss of $51 million in the second quarter of 2013, after a loss of $103 million in the second quarter of 2012.

    Here’s an update on company financials and the billionaires trading Sears.  


  • Guru Real Time Transactions Highlight

    The following information is a highlight of the real-time guru activity we saw this week. To view more information on these gurus, check out their guru portfolios. “Real Time Picks” reports the stock purchases and sells that Gurus have made within the prior two weeks. If a Guru makes a purchase or sell of a company in which they own a greater-than 5% stake, SEC regulations require them to report their transaction within two days. We saw notable real time activity from Mario Gabelli, Edward Lampert and Mason Hawkins.

    Mario Gabelli  


  • Overcoming Ouch - Edward Lampert Second Quarter Slash

    Investor, entrepreneurial savant and retail visionary, Edward Lampert, CEO of Sears Holdings Corporation and founder of ESL Investments, has seen a rare down cycle lately. His portfolio’s total value is down around a billion dollars since reports from May 2013.

    After fighting the slippery slopes of re-imagineering Sears and its spin-offs, including the troubled Orchard Supply Hardware (OSH, OSHWQ, OSHSQ), Lampert drastically cut his companies in the second quarter of 2013 but still holds 31.82% of Sears Holdings Corporation (NASDAQ:SHLD) and 25.05% of Sears Hometown & Outlet Stores Inc. (NASDAQ:SHOS), 2.23% of Gap Inc. (NYSE:GPS) and 16.75% of AutoNation (NYSE:AN).  


  • Real Time Guru Reductions as Hudson’s Bay Acquires Saks

    According to GuruFocus Real Time Picks, here are the most recent Guru reductions of holdings in four well-known companies. Check out the companies’ second quarter 2013 financial results as well as trade details.

    First up, the iconic luxury retailer Saks Incorporated (SKS) has entered into a merger agreement with Hudson’s Bay Company (HBC). The merger is expected to be finalized by the end of the year.  


  • Berkowitz and Lampert – Luck, Concentration, Sears and Other Top Holdings

    A great bit of investing advice, Bruce Berkowitz once said, “Always assume you will have bad luck.” With several of their top holdings way up over 12 months, gurus Bruce Berkowitz and Edward Lampert have both had good luck and bad, and they both run concentrated portfolios. Guru investor Bruce Berkowitz, founder of Fairholme Capital Management, has a reputation for concentrating a portfolio.

    As of June 11, 2013, Fairholme Capital Management lists 21 stocks, with three new stocks, in a portfolio valued at $7.86 billion, and a quarter-over-quarter turnover of 6%. The Berkowitz portfolio is heavily weighed with financial services, at 64.3%.  


  • CEO and President of Sears Hometown & Outlet Stores Inc. Bruce Johnson Bought 3,000 Shares

    Sears Hometown & Outlet Stores Inc. was incorporated in Delaware on April 23, 2012. Sears Hometown has a market cap of $863.6 million; its shares were traded at around $42.63.

    On June 10, CEO and President of Sears Hometown & Outlet Stores Inc. (NASDAQ:SHOS) Bruce Johnson bought 3,000 shares at an average price of $49.02. The total transaction amount was $147,060.  


  • AutoNation, A Contrarian Pick With Edward Lampert Aboard

    Who knows what changes a person would undergo if his or her wealth increases to the point that he or she is a billionaire? Some such people are particularly enjoyable to follow. One who has only been familiar to me for maybe two years is Edward Lampert of ESL Investments, a fund that has been labeled as activist. Mr. Lampert really made his fortune as a director of AutoZone (AZO), and anyone who is familiar with him knows that he has insight into the auto industry and stock repurchase programs. AutoNation (NYSE:AN) is another of his profitable holdings. It is isolated from European economic problems that affect the wider automotive industry. As the stock has run up and out of analyst favor, it may become a contrarian pick, despite the fact that it sports a high valuation.

    Widely-followed money is behind AutoNation. Not only does ESL Investments maintain a sizable position that comprises over one third of its portfolio, but Bill and Melinda Gates are onboard too. However, ESL Investments and Joel Greenblatt have been trimming back and locking in gains. All of these parties are exceptionally well-advised.  


  • Real-Time Rodeo and Round Up - Reduction Trades

    The month of May is when rodeo season heats up around the U.S. and cowboys, just like investors, prove their timing, finesse and skill in riding something risky and unpredictable. A review of the GuruFocus "Real Time Picks" report shows the month of May was a virtual rodeo of reductions made by the world’s top investors. Let’s round up the riders and the horses for a real-time reduction rodeo:

    Orchard Supply Hardware (OSH)  


  • Visionary Retail Investor Lampert Sells Three

    Edward Lampert, founder of ESL Investments and top executive for Sears Holdings Corporation (NASDAQ:SHLD), sold out holdings in three companies as of March 31, 2013. With a deep understanding of the everyday consumer, Lampert has made a fortune as a visionary retail investor. His portfolio is weighted with 97.6% in the consumer cyclical sector. Here’s a look at the retail-based companies Guru Lampert is letting go in his first quarter 2013 sell outs:

    Sold Out: AutoZone Inc. (NYSE:AZO) – Specialty Retail  


  • Real-Time Review of Three Trades

    According to GuruFocus Real Time Picks, these are some of the Guru trades listing in the last 24 hours and a look at how the companies are performing:

    Carl Icahn  


  • Savant Edward Lampert, Top Six Holdings - Great Gains Despite One Bad Apple

    Here’s a look at the portfolio of investing Guru Edward Lampert, Number 68 on the Forbes list of 400 Richest Americans. Lampert wears multiple crowns as the founder of his own hedge fund ESL Investments and as the Chairman and CEO of Sears Holdings. Lampert’s reputation as a savant investor and creative mastermind has grown to near-mythic proportion. With super-gains like his top positions reveal, Lampert can afford one bad apple in the “Orchard.” Lampert is the matchmaker behind the Sears and Kmart union, which ultimately produced two spin-offs Sears Hometown & Outlet Stores, and the problem child, Orchard Supply Hardware. The ESL Investments portfolio is heavily weighted with consumer cyclical, reflecting that Guru Lampert reads the pulse of the people, how we live, what we drive, and what we wear.

    Here are Edward Lampert’s top six holdings:  


  • Countdown for Orchard – Edward Lampert Cuts OSH, Sears Backstory

    According to the GuruFocus 52-week low screener, Orchard Supply Hardware (OSH) is at a 52-week low, and 93.3% off its high. As Orchard Supply Hardware (OSH) faces possible default on a loan payment, top stakeholder Guru Edward Lampert, CEO of Sears Holding Corporation and founder of ESL Investments, reduced his Orchard Supply Hardware (OSH) position again by 16.25%, with remaining shares at 839,867, as of April 24, 2013. He traded at an average price of $1.55. The current price is $1.45, with a change from average down 6%. Seeking an out-of-court restructuring, Orchard Supply’s lawyers and advisers must strike a deal with lenders by May 1.

    Orchard Supply Hardware (OSH) operates neighborhood hardware and garden stores featuring products for home improvement, repair and the yard. Founded as a farmers’ cooperative in San Jose in 1931, the company has 89 stores in California.  


  • Edward Lampert Prunes Orchard – 52-Week Low, OSH 92.3% Off

    The GuruFocus 52-week low screener reveals that Orchard Supply Hardware (OSH), the Sears home and garden improvement spin-off, is way off by 92.3%. OSH shares are priced at $2.14, from the high of $27.93. The 52-week low value screen also shows that Sears CEO Edward Lampert is one of three Gurus still holding on.

    As of April 11, 2013, Sears CEO Edward Lampert, also founder of ESL Investments, reduced his Orchard Supply Hardware position again by 2.12%, with remaining shares at 1,005,329. He last pruned his Orchard position by 0.31% on April 1, 2013, and had trimmed multiple times prior in this quarter. Since first quarter in 2012, between shares bought and sold, Lampert’s average cost per share was $27, for a 92% loss.  


  • Hawk-Eyed Gurus on Safeway and Blackhawk

    With a market cap of $6.16 billion, Safeway Inc. (SWY) is one of the largest U.S. supermarket chains and a little surprisingly, a technology leader. The company continues to increase its U.S. market share with customizable customer interfaces offered via smartphones. Safeway Inc. was among the first to convert discount coupons into deals offered through an iPhone or Android app. More than its competitors, Safeway leadership grabbed on to new technology to radically transform the grocery business: They found new ways to meet consumers glued to smartphones. According to GuruFocus research, the company had seen its market cap reduced by almost half in the past five years leading to year-end 2012, but has since seen a dramatic 40% increased year to date.

    Safeway’s technology savvy results in another boost for the chain grocer. Its new gift card and prepaid payment service unit, Blackhawk Network Holdings Inc., filed a registration with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission in mid-March to raise $200 million in an initial public offering of its Class A common stock, with the ticker: HAWK.  


  • Eddie Lampert Hacks OSH - Is Sears Spinoff Spinning Out?

    Almost a year ago, Sears CEO Edward Lampert owned 2,122,707 OSH shares — today he owns about half of that. As of March 25, 2013, Lampert reduced his position in Orchard Supply Hardware (OSH), a Sears spinoff, for the third time since last summer. For quarter ending June 30, 2012, the 10% owner Lampert had reduced his position by 22.7%, then again for quarter ending Dec. 31, 2012, Lampert reduced by 29.51%. His most current trade, reducing by 8.7%, leaves him with current shares of 1,080,204. The current price of OSH shares is $3.97, and according to GuruFocus analysis, is off 47% year to date.

    What is going on with Orchard and its uber investor Guru Lampert, the mastermind of the Sears makeover? Orchard Supply Hardware is a David and Goliath story, but this time, there are many giants to battle. Orchard competes with home improvement and hardware heavies who have already figured out supply chain, pricing strategy and customer options. Orchard’s competitors include The Home Depot, Ace Hardware, Costco, Wal-Mart, Target, TrueValue and Lowe’s for house paint, garden tools, and other do-it-yourself products. Compare The Home Depot fiscal 2012 revenue of $70 billion to Orchard’s fiscal 2011 revenue of $660 million.  


  • Edward Lampert and Francis Chou’s New Stocks See Biggest Gains

    The Score Board of Gurus on GuruFocus gives a picture of how investors’ stock picks have performed in various time periods. Over the short-term period of the past six months, the Gurus whose new stocks have posted the greatest market gains are Edward Lampert and Francis Chou, with average returns of 47.67% and 46.5%, respectively.

    Lampert is the founder of ESL Investments, a hedge fund, who has taken to retail turnaround projects such as with Sears Holdings (NASDAQ:SHLD). Francis Chou operates Chou Associates Management, a group of mutual funds based in Canada with a thoroughly value-oriented perspective.  


  • Edward Lampert and Sears, Investing in Wow

    As Sears Holding Corporation (NASDAQ:SHLD) announced a loss of $489 million with sales continuing a six-year decline, the new Sears CEO Edward Lampert, also manager of ESL Investments, made two adds of SHLD, 2.91% and 0.79%, at the average price of $44.17 the first week of March 2013. Lampert now owns 43,845,246 SHLD shares. The stock price has changed by 0%.

      


  • Eddie Lampert's Sears Sees Q4 Revenue Decline

    Hedge fund manager and investing savant Edward Lampert formed Sears Holdings (NASDAQ:SHLD) out of Sears and a Kmart emerging from bankruptcy in 2005. While several respected investors also poured money into the company, over the years, performance has been lumpy even as he as chairman has increased his control of the company, culminating in the installment of Lampert as CEO in January and fourth quarter results released today.

    For the fourth quarter of 2013, Sears Holdings reported mixed results compared to the prior-year quarter. Adjusted EBITDA was up for the fourth consecutive quarter, to $429 million, in line with its guidance of Jan. 7, 2013, and up from $351 million in the prior-year quarter. Sears Domestic's comparable store sales improved 0.8%, and its gross margin rate increased 130 basis points.  


  • Edward Lampert's Sears Holdings Annual Letter 2013

    Chairman's Letter February 28, 2013

    To Our Shareholders, Associates and Members:  


  • Edward Lampert Reports Owning 2 New Stocks

    Edward Lampert has a highly successful hedge fund, ESL Investments, and also often takes a hands-on role at the companies he invests in, particularly Sears Holdings (NASDAQ:SHLD). He is a bottom-up stock picker focused on company fundamentals. Lampert’s portfolio is valued at $3.84 billion, has 11 stocks and is 94.6% weighted in the consumer cyclical sector. In the fourth quarter, he reported to holding two new stocks: Safeway Inc. (SWY) and Sears Hometown & Outlet Stores Inc. (NASDAQ:SHOS).

    Sears Hometown & Outlet Stores Inc. (NASDAQ:SHOS)  


  • Eddie Lampert’s Low P/E Retail Stocks

    Like Warren Buffett, founder of hedge fund ESL Investments, Edward Lampert, goes for easily understandable businesses that have solid cash flows. But unlike Buffett, Lampert spends less time focusing on management, given that he would rather implement changes in the companies himself, by working with, or shaking up management teams (from Lampert’s GuruFolio report).

    This approach is especially prevalent in several of his investments, which are majority retail. He specializes in acquiring stakes in beaten-down retailers, particularly one widely popular one, Sears Holdings (NASDAQ:SHLD), a company where he has recently secured a CEO position.  


  • Eddie Lampert Buys More Sears Holdings Shares After Taking Control as CEO

    Just days after taking over the CEO role at Sears Holdings (NASDAQ:SHLD), Eddie Lampert has furthered his gradual dominance of the company by increasing his shareholding. GuruFocus Real Time Picks reports that Lampert increased his Sears stake by 0.79% at the average price of $41.30 per share on Jan. 9, 2013.

    The purchased raised his ownership in the company to 56.5% of shares outstanding, and elevated his share count to 42,606,190. News of the event sent shares up 7.4% in midday trading.  


  • Businessweek - How Will Eddie Lampert Do with Sears?

    The future of Sears Holdings (NASDAQ:SHLD) boils down not to its same-store sales, online strategy, or any of retail’s countless other metrics, but this one question: Is Eddie Lampert a budding Warren Buffett or a Willy Loman?

    That’s long been a question on Wall Street, never more so than this week after Lampert, 50, the chairman of the company and founder and head of hedge fund ESL Investments, inserted himself as Sears’s fifth chief executive officer in seven years. You cannot help but wonder if Lampert knows what he wants to do with the retailer/investment vehicle, which is the product of his 2005 smashing together of Kmart and Sears Roebuck.  


  • Is Sears the Next Berkshire Hathaway?

    A well-respected value investor buys an old American company in decline, promising to restore its fortunes. Alas, the recovery never comes. The economics of the industry have changed, and the company cannot compete with younger, nimbler rivals. The company ceases operations, but the value investor holds onto the shell to use as an investment vehicle.  


  • Edward Lampert Claims CEO Title of Sears Holdings Corp.

    Long-time stakeholder of specialty retailer Sears Holdings Corp. (NASDAQ:SHLD), Edward Lampert of ESL Investments, has stepped in to succeed Louis D’Ambrosio’s position as CEO, after D’Ambrosio announced yesterday that he is stepping down due to family health matters.

    Lampert will proceed to serve as Sears Holdings' board of directors chairman, in addition to his new CEO title, which is set to take into effect Feb. 2. D’Ambrosio will remain on the board until the company’s next Annual Meeting of Stockholders, to be held May 2013.  


  • Revenues Fall at Sears Holdings in Third Quarter Results

    HOFFMAN ESTATES, Ill., Nov. 15, 2012 /PRNewswire/ -- Sears Holdings Corporation ("Holdings," "we," "us," "our" or the "Company") (NASDAQ:SHLD) today reported its third quarter 2012 results. In summary, we reported:
    • Adjusted EBITDA increased $34 million for the quarter to a loss of $156 million in 2012 versus a loss of $190 million in 2011. Domestic Adjusted EBITDA increased $18 million (a loss of $164 million in 2012 versus a loss of $182 million in 2011). Sears Canada's Adjusted EBITDA improved $16 million ($8 million in 2012 versus a loss of $8 million in 2011);
    • Net loss from continuing operations attributable to Holdings' shareholders for the third quarter of $498 million ($4.70 loss per diluted share) and $410 million ($3.85 loss per diluted share), in 2012 and 2011, respectively. The third quarter included an effective tax rate of 2.3% in 2012 versus a benefit rate of 18.0% in 2011;
    • Adjusted loss per diluted share from continuing operations for the third quarter of $1.99 in 2012 and $2.55 in 2011;
    • For the quarter, selling and administrative expenses declined $139 million;
    • Sears Domestic's comparable store sales declined 1.6% in the third quarter of 2012, Kmart's comparable store sales declined 4.8%, and Sears Canada's comparable store sales declined 5.7%;
    • Continued discipline of our investment in inventory with domestic inventory declining $1.4 billion from the prior year balance ($972 million excluding the inventory related to the Sears Hometown and Outlet businesses);
    • Completed the separation of Sears Hometown and Outlet Stores, Inc. on October 11, 2012 which raised $446.5 million in gross proceeds; and
    • Partial spin-off to our shareholders of 45% of the outstanding common shares of Sears Canada closed on November 13, 2012.
    Lou D'Ambrosio, Sears Holdings' Chief Executive Officer and President, said, "For the 3rd quarter and year-to-date, we improved EBITDA, accelerated our strategic actions and generated significant cash by delivering on the actions we outlined at our Annual meeting. Our EBITDA improvement in the quarter came from some of our most important categories like Appliances, Apparel, and Home Services as we introduced new offers, honed pricing, effectively managed costs and implemented better inventory management. We did experience shortfalls, however, in categories like Grocery and Household and Consumer Electronics, and are taking actions to improve that performance.

    We will continue to take the actions necessary to create value and retain the flexibility to invest in the strategic priorities of our company. We are rapidly moving to a member based business model. Our investments are focused on our members and their experience -- at the store, online, and mobile -- which is why we are investing in Integrated Retail and our SHOP YOUR WAY membership program. Over half of our revenues at Sears Domestic and Kmart now come from SHOP YOUR WAY membership.  


  • Hedge Fund Billionaire Eddie Lampert Buys Netflix, Big Lots, Sells Gap, Autozone, Capital One Financial

    Billionaire financier Eddie Lampert has had a lot of success with investing in retailers. His positions in Autozone, AutoNation gained multi-baggers. Although he seems to be struggling with his largest retailer investment, Sears (NASDAQ:SHLD), he still made a lot of money with the position. Now Lampert buys Netflix, and added into another retailer Big Lots, Inc. He sells Gap, Inc., Autozone Inc, Capital One Financial Corp, Cit Group Inc, Seagate Technology Plc, Avon Products Inc etc during the 3-months ended 09/30/2012, according to the most recent filings of his investment company, ESL Investments. Lampert keeps selling AutoNation and Autozone over the past quarters. They are his long term positions and their stock prices have appreciated multiple times. Overall, Eddie sold a lot more stocks than bought during the third quarter.

    As of 09/30/2012, ESL Investments owns 10 stocks with a total value of $5.6 billion. These are the details of the buys and sells.  


  • Edward Lampert Makes Reductions to AutoNation

    Though manager of hedge fund ESL Investments, Eddie Lampert, had been steadily chiseling down his stake in AutoNation (NYSE:AN) since the first quarter of 2010, he made his first reduction of this year in a series of transactions from Oct. 31 to Nov. 2, according to GuruFocus Real Time Picks. The total amount sold was 763,507 shares, which shrank his holding size by 1.59 percent. The average selling price was about $44 per share.

    Lampert’s stake in AutoNation grew to almost 80 million shares at its largest in the first quarter of 2009, when the price was around $11 per share. He began selling in the first quarter of 2010, and has reduced the holding to a total of about 47.3 million shares, or 39.19 percent of the company.  


  • Revenue Falls at Eddie Lampert's Sears Holdings in the Second Quarter

    HOFFMAN ESTATES, Ill., Aug. 16, 2012 /PRNewswire/ -- Sears Holdings Corporation ("Holdings," "we," "us," "our" or the "Company") (NASDAQ:SHLD) today reported its second quarter 2012 results. In summary, we reported:

    • Adjusted EBITDA increased $95 million for the quarter to $153 million in 2012 versus $58 million in 2011. Domestic EBITDA increased $114 million ($144 million in 2012 versus $30 million in 2011). Sears Canada's EBITDA declined $19 million ($9 million in 2012 versus $28 million in 2011);
    • For the quarter, margin rate increased 100 basis points and selling and administrative expenses declined;
    • Net loss from continuing operations attributable to Holdings' shareholders for the second quarter of $132 million ($1.25 loss per diluted share) and $152 million ($1.42 loss per diluted share), in 2012 and 2011, respectively. The second quarter included an effective tax benefit rate of 39.3% in 2011 versus a benefit rate of 15.8% in 2012;
    • Adjusted loss per diluted share from continuing operations for the second quarter of $0.86 in 2012 and $1.18 in 2011;
    • Sears Domestic's comparable store sales declined 2.9% in the second quarter of 2012, Kmart's comparable store sales declined 4.7%, and Sears Canada's comparable store sales declined 7.1%;
    • Continued discipline of our inventory with domestic inventory declining $512 million from the prior year balance;
    • Liquidity of $3.1 billion with cash balances of $738 million and nearly $2.4 billion of capacity on domestic and Canadian revolving credit facilities, as well as Sears Hometown and Outlet Store transaction on track to raise $446.5 million of gross proceeds; and
    • Partial spin-off of our interest in Sears Canada expected to close in the second half of 2012 with distribution to our shareholders.
    Lou D'Ambrosio, Sears Holdings' Chief Executive Officer and President, said, "We continue to make progress against the priorities we outlined in our fourth quarter earnings release and call. In particular, we have improved our profit position, as we reduced expenses and expanded margin rate through more effective promotional design. We have also successfully lowered inventory, reduced debt from year end, and enhanced our liquidity. In addition, the Sears Hometown transaction remains on track to close in the third quarter. While we drive operational discipline, we are also investing in our customer experience, particularly through our ShopYourWay membership program and Integrated Retail. Our focus is on providing clear benefits to our members and customers, and delivering an excellent and seamless experience across the store, online, mobile and in the home."  


  • Eddie Lampert Finds One Attractive Stock in Second Quarter - Avon

    Renowned investor Eddie Lampert, founder of hedge fund ESL Investments, found only one new stock for his extremely concentrated portfolio of 12 stocks: Avon Products Inc. (NYSE:AVP). He bought 145,922 shares at an average price of $19.

    Avon Products Inc. is one of the world's manufacturers and marketers of beauty and related products, which include cosmetics, fragrance and toiletries; beauty plus which consists of jewelry and accessories and apparel; and non-core which consists of gift and decorative and home entertainment products.  


  • Eddie Lampert's Sears Ponders Spin-Offs

    From Barron's:

    In recent years Sears Holdings (NASDAQ:SHLD) has been among the more controversial companies on Wall Street. Yet there is little disagreement between the stock's backers and detractors about the quality of the core Sears and Kmart retail operations: All think it stinks. Both chains are considered also-rans, with too many tired stores in disadvantaged locations, subject to a slow bleed in sales.  


  • Eddie Lampert Slashes Stakes in Four Stocks

    Eddie Lampert, founder of ESL Investments which has $19.5 billion in assets under management, made big cuts to holdings of CIT Group (NYSE:CIT), Seagate Tech (NASDAQ:STX), Big Lots Inc. (NYSE:BIG) and Istar Financial Inc. (SFI) in the first quarter. Previously, the holdings where his sixth, seventh, eighth and tenth largest, respectively, in his portfolio which now contains eleven stocks. He bought no new stocks in the first quarter.

    CIT Group (NYSE:CIT)  


  • Eddie Lampert Reducing Sears' Spin-Off Orchard Supply Co.

    Eddie Lampert’s hedge fund ESL Investors LLC, which owns approximately 61% of Sears Holdings (NASDAQ:SHLD), has not been selling shares of its ailing but slightly reduced its holding of Sears’ spin-off, Orchard Supply Co. (OSH), in the last two months. After Orchard began trading independently on Jan. 3, 2012, Lampert on March 13 reduced his holding by 0.01% at about $24 per share and owned 2,164,881 shares, according to GuruFocus Real Time Picks. Then, on April 3, he reduced his position by a further 0.09% at an approximate share price of $26, and now owns 2,122,707 shares.

    Under the terms of Sears’ agreement to spin-off Orchard Supply, it would distribute all of Orchard’s Class A common stock and Orchard Series A preferred stock held by sears on a pro rata basis to holders of Sears’ common stock. Every 22.14 shares of Sears’ common stock held would equal one share of Class A common stock and one share of preferred stock.  


  • Eddie Lampert on CNBC Discussing Rainwater's Legacy

    Eddie Lampert, well-known investor and head of ESL Partners was on CNBC discussing the influence of legendary dealmaker Richard Rainwater, along with David Bonderman, Texas Pacific Group founding partner, and Barry Sternlicht, Starwood Capital Group chairman and CEO.

    Here is the video:  


  • Follow-Up: Is Sears the Next Berkshire Hathaway?

    Late last year, I asked openly if Sears (NASDAQ:SHLD) could be the next Berkshire Hathaway (BRK-A) (seeIs Sears the Next Berkshire Hathaway?). The article was admittedly a bit of a tease. When I suggested that Sears might be the next Berkshire, I didn’t intend it as a compliment. As I wrote in December, everyone assumes that Warren Buffett’s decision to buy Berkshire Hathaway was one of his typical strokes of genius. Nothing could be further from the truth. In fact, Buffett revealed in a video interview that Berkshire Hathaway was the worst trade of his career, as a “$200 billion mistake.”

    Like Sears under chairman Eddie Lampert, Berkshire Hathaway was a company in terminal decline when Buffett bought it. Buffett spent the first few decades as owner slowly shuttering the company’s factories, selling off assets, and redeploying the cash to more profitable ends.  


  • Eddie Lampert's Q4 Chairman's Letter for Sears - Will Not Be 'Business as Usual"

    To Our Shareholders:

    Our poor financial results in 2011, culminating in a very poor fourth quarter, underscore the need to accelerate the transformation of Sears Holdings (NASDAQ:SHLD). While some may claim that these results are a continuation of a trend, I believe that they are an anomaly after three years of relatively stable EBITDA performance ($1.1-$1.4 billion for US Domestic operations), albeit at a level well below our peak performance in 2006 ($3.2 billion in EBITDA for US Domestic operations). We own 95% of Sears Canada, which also experienced very poor results, and included a change in management in mid-year.  


  • Sears - Going Private?

    It been a while but the “SHLD is going private" drum beat is back. I looked at this in 2008, and really the case against Lampert taking private has strengthened. This isn’t to say he may not want to or try, just that his ability to do it has been reduced.

    [quote]From the SEC Website:  


  • Eddie Lampert Still Showing Conviction on Struggling Sears, Adds Almost 5 Million Shares

    Sears’ floundering business and sinking share price are just an opportunity for Eddie Lampert to buy more shares, apparently. Lampert’s investment to save Sears has been compared to Buffett’s early days with Berkshire Hathaway (NYSE:BRK.A)(NYSE:BRK.B), although his recent buys confirm he is not anywhere near conceding defeat with the company. Lampert, founder of ESL Investments where he has made a 29% average annual return, is also chairman of Sears (NASDAQ:SHLD), which has had 18 consecutive quarters of declining sales.

    According to GuruFocus’ Real Time Picks, his holding of the company increased 10% in January and he now owns 53,050,284 shares, or just shy of 50% of the company. In a total of four purchases from January 9 to January 11 he bought 4,870,529 shares at a range of $29.20 to $30.99 per share. The stock has declined almost 38% in the last three months and has a 52-week range of $28.89 to $94.79.  


  • Eddie Lampert: Still a Great Investor in Spite of Sears

    Many have argued that his investing prowess and investment in Sears make Eddie Lampert comparable to a young Warren Buffett. While there are many reasons he is not the next Buffett and his Sears investment is unlike Buffett’s in Berkshire Hathaway (NYSE:BRK.A)(NYSE:BRK.B), he is still a great investor in his own right with major successes and 29% average return over his relatively young career. Sears has faltered under his leadership, but it does not negate his overall record.

    Lampert’s investment in Sears (NASDAQ:SHLD) shares certain characteristics with Buffett’s investment in Berkshire Hathaway (NYSE:BRK.A)(NYSE:BRK.B) in the early days, but it is not a parallel situation. For instance, Buffett bought Berkshire in the hopes of kick starting a stagnant business, as did Lampert with Sears. Yet Berkshire was a textile mill, a waning industry which Buffett said in his 1977 shareholder letter was “unlikely to produce returns on capital comparable to those available in many other businesses,” although they had put in “strenuous efforts.”  


  • CNBC Video: Following Lampert's Money

    CNBC's David Faber discusses a 13D filing from Eddie Lampert.

      


  • Is Sears the Next Berkshire Hathaway and Eddie Lampert the Next Warren Buffett?: SHLD, BRK.A, BRK.B

    A well-respected value investor buys an old American company in decline, promising to restore its fortunes. Alas, the recovery never comes. The economics of the industry have changed, and the company cannot compete with younger, nimbler rivals. The company ceases operations, but the value investor holds onto the shell to use as an investment vehicle.

    Could this be the future of Sears Holdings (NASDAQ:SHLD) under Eddie Lampert? Maybe; maybe not. But it was certainly the case for Warren Buffett’s Berkshire Hathaway (NYSE:BRK.A)(NYSE:BRK.B).  


  • Stocks Eddie Lampert Keeps Buying

    Edward Lampert is the founder of ESL Investments, a legendary hedge fund that has delivered annual average returns of almost 30% since 1988. He also chairs Sears Holdings Corporation which he created by masterminding the rescue and merger of Sears and Kmart.

    Lampert has always been an active investor in retail, which means that acquiring a significant stake also involves taking a leadership role in its management.  


  • Where is the Light at the End of the Tunnel for Sears Shareholders?

    In 2007 value investors everywhere were drooling over the prospects at Sears. Hedge fund manager Bill Ackman took a highly publicized position in Sears and estimated that the real estate value alone of Sears was $22 billion.  


  • Eddie Lampert Buys Gap Inc., Seagate Technology, Big Lots Inc., Sells Autozone Inc., Capital One Financial Corp.

    Renowned hedge fund manager, Sears Chairman Eddie Lampert reported his third quarter portfolio. Unlike many other hedge fund managers, Lampert has very low turnovers with his portfolio. He has made extraordinary profit on his long term holdings AutoZone and AutoNation. Lampert buys Gap Inc., Seagate Technology, Big Lots Inc., Cit Group Inc., IStar Financial Inc., sells AutoZone Inc., Capital One Financial Corp. during the 3-months ended 09/30/2011, according to the most recent filings of his investment company, ESL Investments. As of 09/30/2011, ESL Investments owns 12 stocks with a total value of $9.1 billion. These are the details of the buys and sells that have the impact to portfolio of more than .1%.

    This is the portfolio chart of Edward Lampert. You can click on the legend of the chart to show/hide buys, sells, or holdings. Each ball on the chart represents a position in the portfolio. You can move your mouse on the balls to see the details of each position and click to see the details of all guru trades with this position.  


  • Eddie Lampert Compares Capital Allocation Decisions Amongst Apple, Microsoft and Sears

    It has been a long time since I took a serious look at Sears (NASDAQ:SHLD) and was a little shocked by how far the share price had fallen. As I tried to re-familiarize myself with the current state of affairs with the company I came across an interesting section in the most recent Sears letter to shareholders.

    Of course Lampert’s policy has been to aggressively buy back shares virtually non-stop. Far different that what Buffett did with Berkshire Hathaway and certainly different than what most of us expected when he took over the company.  


  • Weekly CEO Buys Highlight: RCL, CIT, PNK, EXE, UNIS

    Last weeks’ top five stocks that were bought by their CEOs were RCL, CIT, PNk, EXE, and UNIS. According to GuruFocus Insider Data, these are the largest CEO buys during the past week.

    Royal Caribbean Cruises Ltd. (NYSE:RCL): Chairman & CEO Richard D Fain Bought 66,000 Shares  


  • Edward Lampert Reduces Position in AutoZone by 2.72%

    Edward Lampert reduced his position in AutoZone by 2.72%. He sold AZO at the average price of $291.6 on 06/24/2011, as reported in the latest insider filings by Edward Lampert, and owns 9,244,962 shares.

    AutoZone is the nation's specialty retailer of automotive parts and accessories, primarily focusing on do-it-yourself customers. AutoZone Inc. has a market cap of $12.31 billion; its shares were traded at around $291.6 with a P/E ratio of 16.15 and P/S ratio of 1.67. AutoZone Inc. had an annual average earnings growth of 17.9% over the past 10 years. GuruFocus rated AutoZone Inc. the business predictability rank of 4.5-star.  


  • Hedge Fund Manager Eddie Lampert Continues Reducing His Position in AutoZone

    Eddie Lampert reduced his AutoZone stake by 5.89% on Wednesday, according to GuruFocus Real Time Picks. He has been trimming his investment in the company by small percentages at regular intervals beginning May 27, but this is his largest sale since then.

    Lampert began purchasing AutoZone shares in 1998 and steadily amassed a sizable stake in the company. By 2001 Lampert’s hedge fund owned more than 30 million shares of AutoZone, which is more than 25% of shares outstanding at the time. As of June 21 he owns 9,503,896 shares of AutoZone.  


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