Good News: Sears Soars on Surprise Profit

Sears shares soar 18% in morning trading a day after the department store reports a surprise first-quarter profit.
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Sears'

(SHLD)

shares soared in Friday morning trading, after the department store retailer posted a surprise first-quarter profit after the bell on Thursday.

Shares of the company, which owns Sears and Kmart stores, soared 18% to $59.24.

The company said it earned $26 million, or 21 cents a share, compared with a loss of $56 million, or 43 cents a share, last year.

Excluding one-time items, Sears would have earned $128 million, or 38 cents a share. Analysts expected a loss of 88 cents.

Jim Cramer is a fan of Sears, saying on Friday, "The issues here are all about debt negotiations and Eddie Lampert's put them behind him. There are only 116 million shares out there with a lot more ammo to buy back stock."

But sales still declined 10% to $10.06 billion, from $11.07 billion, while same-store sales dropped 7.4%. By division, comparable sales at Sears stores slid 11% and Kmart saw a 2.1% slip.

Sears also announced that it amended and extended its credit facility to provide $4.1 billion in financing through March 24, 2010, and $2.4 billion from March 25, 2010, through June 2012.

Earlier in the month, its department store rivals also released first-quarter earnings.

Macy's

(M) - Get Report

was the hardest hit, as

sales fell to a four-year low

during the quarter and the company saw a loss in profit.

J.C. Penney

(JCP) - Get Report

reported a

79% plunge in profit

, hurt by heft pension expense, while

Kohl's

(KSS) - Get Report

saw a

10% drop in earnings

, but still raised its full-year forecast.

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