Macy’s, down 9% year to date, has a possible 50 percent upside in a potential sale even with its brick and mortar-heavy portfolio, according to a Barron’s article Saturday. As consumers shift toward online shopping, department stores like Macy’s have seen sales plunge the past two years, but the steep drop in Macy’s stock makes it a tempting acquisition target, according to Barron’s.
Macy’s share hit a post-recession peak of $73 in 2015, and the stock is trading near $32 in recent session, a roughly 60% drop that puts it in bargain territory.
In January, Cincinnati-based Macy’s announced it would close 68 of its 730 stores in the U.S. this year, and it reduced its annual guidance range to $2.95 to $3.10 per share from $3.15 to $3.40 per share. With a dire outlook on the industry, Macy’s still lacks the support of analysts, with just seven out of 28 firms following the department store rating the stock a Buy, less than during the 2008 recession, according to Barron’s. (See also: Macy’s Is Closing 68 Stores.)
Meanwhile Sears, which was plunged more than 8% in Monday’s session, also draws a bearish outlook from analysts, but without the optimism from Barron’s. The question is whether Sears is a retailer at the “right place, wrong time.”
Bill Dreher of Susquehanna says Sears has a “risk/reward profile tilted against equity holders.” Dreher cited the fact that Sears is a combination of two struggling legacy retailers – 676 mall-based Sears stores and 421 Kmart stores – as among the reasons for cautioning against Sears stock. Sears has also depended for survival on loans from CEO Edward Lampert with store real estate as collateral, according to Dreher.