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Amazon's latest assault wipes $13 billion off Home Depot, other appliance seller stocks

Shares of Home Depot and Lowe's were slammed Thursday, along Whirlpool, after Amazon threatened to take on the appliance market in a much bigger way in a deal with Sears Holdings.

The market cap loss in Home Depot, Lowe's, Whirlpool and Best Buy was about
$13 billion at midday. Amazon stock was up slightly, and Sears was up about 13 percent.

But the early read from some analysts was that the selloff has created a buying opportunity for home improvement retailers, Home Depot and Lowe's, which have proven themselves to be somewhat 'Amazon-proof' and among the best performers in the sector. Best Buy, already battling Amazon in electronics, was also sharply lower.

Sears, which has been losing share in appliance for years, saw its stock rally as much as 25 percent Thursday, after it announced it would sell its Kenmore-branded appliances on The products will be compatible with Amazon's Alexa platform.

"The net take out is it's a potential negative for pricing and profitability for white box appliances," said Bob Wetenhall at RBC. "I don't think Alexa is the big deal here…It's more the fact that Amazon is going to sell Kenmore-branded appliances."

"It's probably less of a Whirlpool issue," said Wetenhall, adding the price pressures would hit retailers. He said Whirlpool is the source for about half the Kenmore-branded appliances, one time a household standard and now a laggard. Wetenhall said it's too early to know how the deal will impact the integration of appliances...