Sears sees sales slump after poor start to the year

US department store Sears, Roebuck and Co has reported poor sales and profits after failing to recover from a weak start to the year.

It had hoped to deliver flat comparable sales in the second quarter, but was scuppered by a disappointing June.

Chairman and chief executive Alan J Lacy said the performance last month was in line with 'much of the industry'.

Second-quarter profit fell from US$309 million (£168.2 million) last year to US$53 million (£28.9 million), including asset depreciation costs.

Sales fell 1.7 per cent to US$8.7 billion (£4.78 billion) and comparable sales fell 2.9 per cent.

Sears has bought 53 former Kmart stores to help compete against discount retailers.