Share This Page

J.C. Penney shares fall to 4-year low

| Wednesday, March 6, 2013, 12:01 a.m.

BC-US--JC Penney-Mover,313

J.C. Penney shares fall to 4-year low

Associated Press

NEW YORK — More bad news for J.C. Penney.

The struggling department store chain's already pummeled stock hit a four-year low after media reports said a large shareholder sold of a chunk of its stock. Shares fell 9.7 percent, or $1.63, to $15.11, after briefly reaching a low of $14.99, its lowest price since March 2009.

Vornado Realty Trust, once the company's second largest shareholder, sold almost half its stake, or 10 million shares, at $16.40 per share through Deutsche Bank AG, according to a Bloomberg report on Tuesday that cited people familiar with the matter. That price would be a 2 percent discount to the stock's closing price of $16.74 on Monday.

CNBC and The Wall Street Journal late Monday reported Deutsche Bank was shopping the shares around, also citing unnamed sources. Vornado and Deutsche Bank did not return calls for comment.

It's the latest in a string of bad news for J.C. Penney. The chain is in the middle of a legal battle with Macy's, which sued media and merchandising company Martha Stewart Living Omnimedia for breaching an exclusive contract when Martha Stewart signed a deal with Penney in December 2011 to open shops at most of its stores this spring.

It's also reeling from drastic changes CEO Ron Johnson has made to its business, including slashing the number of sales in favor of everyday low prices, bringing in hipper designer brands such as Betsy Johnson and remaking outdated stores.

The company, based in Plano, Texas, has reported big losses and sales declines for four straight quarters since it started the strategy. In its most recent quarter ended Feb. 2, the Plano, Texas retailer reported a much larger-than-expected loss as revenue plunged nearly 30 percent.

Investors have sent shares of Penney down more than 61 percent from a peak of $43 in the days after the pricing plan was rolled out a year ago.

TribLIVE commenting policy

You are solely responsible for your comments and by using TribLive.com you agree to our Terms of Service.

We moderate comments. Our goal is to provide substantive commentary for a general readership. By screening submissions, we provide a space where readers can share intelligent and informed commentary that enhances the quality of our news and information.

While most comments will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive, moderating decisions are subjective. We will make them as carefully and consistently as we can. Because of the volume of reader comments, we cannot review individual moderation decisions with readers.

We value thoughtful comments representing a range of views that make their point quickly and politely. We make an effort to protect discussions from repeated comments either by the same reader or different readers

We follow the same standards for taste as the daily newspaper. A few things we won't tolerate: personal attacks, obscenity, vulgarity, profanity (including expletives and letters followed by dashes), commercial promotion, impersonations, incoherence, proselytizing and SHOUTING. Don't include URLs to Web sites.

We do not edit comments. They are either approved or deleted. We reserve the right to edit a comment that is quoted or excerpted in an article. In this case, we may fix spelling and punctuation.

We welcome strong opinions and criticism of our work, but we don't want comments to become bogged down with discussions of our policies and we will moderate accordingly.

We appreciate it when readers and people quoted in articles or blog posts point out errors of fact or emphasis and will investigate all assertions. But these suggestions should be sent via e-mail. To avoid distracting other readers, we won't publish comments that suggest a correction. Instead, corrections will be made in a blog post or in an article.