Sony (SNE) To Close 20 U.S. Retail Stores

NEW YORK (TheStreet) -- Sony (SNE) announced Wednesday that it will close 20 retail stores in the U.S., as it looks to cut costs.

Shares of Sony gained 0.1% to $17.38 in Wednesday trade.

The consumer electronics company currently operates 31 retail stores in the U.S., meaning it will shutter two-thirds of its stores. The 11 stores that will remain open are in or near major U.S. cities such as New York, Los Angeles, Orlando, and Houston.

Sony also announced that it will cut 1,000 jobs from the Sony Electronics division, mostly in the U.S. and Mexico. The job cuts are included in the company's previously announced plan to cut 5,000 jobs, which will be completed by March 2015.

"While these moves were extremely tough, they were absolutely necessary to position us in the best possible place for future growth," Mike Fasulo, president and COO of Sony Electronics, said in a statement.

Must read: PlayStation 4 Sales Surpass First Year Targets

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TheStreet Ratings team rates SONY CORP as a Hold with a ratings score of C. TheStreet Ratings Team has this to say about their recommendation:

"We rate SONY CORP (SNE) a HOLD. The primary factors that have impacted our rating are mixed -- some indicating strength, some showing weaknesses, with little evidence to justify the expectation of either a positive or negative performance for this stock relative to most other stocks. The company's strengths can be seen in multiple areas, such as its compelling growth in net income, revenue growth and increase in stock price during the past year. However, as a counter to these strengths, we find that the company's profit margins have been poor overall."

Highlights from the analysis by TheStreet Ratings Team goes as follows:

  • The net income growth from the same quarter one year ago has significantly exceeded that of the S&P 500 and the Household Durables industry. The net income increased by 468.6% when compared to the same quarter one year prior, rising from -$72.42 million to $266.97 million.
  • SNE's revenue growth trails the industry average of 28.7%. Since the same quarter one year prior, revenues rose by 11.5%. Growth in the company's revenue appears to have helped boost the earnings per share.
  • The current debt-to-equity ratio, 0.54, is low and is below the industry average, implying that there has been successful management of debt levels. Despite the fact that SNE's debt-to-equity ratio is low, the quick ratio, which is currently 0.62, displays a potential problem in covering short-term cash needs.
  • The company's current return on equity greatly increased when compared to its ROE from the same quarter one year prior. This is a signal of significant strength within the corporation. In comparison to the other companies in the Household Durables industry and the overall market, SONY CORP's return on equity is significantly below that of the industry average and is below that of the S&P 500.
  • The gross profit margin for SONY CORP is currently extremely low, coming in at 7.87%. Regardless of SNE's low profit margin, it has managed to increase from the same period last year. Despite the mixed results of the gross profit margin, the net profit margin of 1.29% trails the industry average.
  • You can view the full analysis from the report here: SNE Ratings Report

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