Department store operator J.C. Penney said on Friday it would close about 130-140 stores over the next few months, and reported a bigger-than-expected drop in same-store sales for the holiday quarter. The company said it would also initiate a voluntary early retirement program for about 6,000 eligible employees and close two distribution facilities.
Shares of the company, which reported its first annual adjusted profit in five years, rose 3 percent in premarket trading. J.C. Penney’s store closures come after larger rival Macy’s said in November it would shut 100 stores, as department stores struggle with weak demand for apparel and growing competition from online retailers. READ MORE