Because of a sharp and disappointing drop in holiday sales compared to a year ago, Sears Holding Corp. says it will close between 100 and 120 Sears and Kmart stores nationwide.

Sears says sales at stores open at least a year, known as same-store sales, were down 5.2% in the eight weeks leading to Christmas Day. These is in stark contrast to the broader retail market, which posted strong sales the day after Thanksgiving.

Sears executives say their performance was so weak that even more poor performing stores may be closed.  Total closings may amount to as many as 10% of the nearly 4,000 stores it still has open.

Aside from closing stores, Sears is also changing the way it handles stores that are not performing as well as others. The company says it will no longer prop up marginally performing stores in hopes of improving their performance, and will now concentrate on cash-generating stores.  That's the same thing as saying they're giving up on the weak and sinking stores so they can focus on the strong stores.

via Bad holiday sales leads to Sears, Kmart store closings - Dec. 27, 2011

Sears hasn't decided which stores will close, and it won't talk about how many jobs will be cut.  The final list of stores to be closed will be posted soon on the company's corporate media website.