"Sears and Kmart absolutely cannot be competitive," said national retail consultant Howard Davidowitz of Davidowitz & Associates in New York City. "Every quarter, every month, they are burning through a ton of cash. The only way they can survive is to keep closing stores. They are on their way to disappearing."

Phoenix-based consultant Jeff Green, who works with national retailers on long-term growth strategies, said discounters such as Target and Walmart have brand distinctions - Walmart is price-driven, whereas Target is a mix of quality and price. Kmart, he said, does not have any "defining difference" that separates it from its competitors.


But Kmart's staffers aren't the only casualties. A Credit Suisse report this year estimated that more than 37,000 retail workers nationally will lose their jobs by the end of this year as brick-and-mortar stores close.

That figure is more than double the retail-industry layoffs last year, and the most the sector has seen in the last eight years, according to analyst Michael Exstein, who wrote the Credit Suisse report.

Comments: Be the first to add a comment

add a comment | go to forum thread