U.S. retailer Sears Holdings reported a larger-than-expected quarterly loss as cooler weather hurt sales at its department stores and said it was considering a sale of its protection agreement business to shore up liquidity.

The operator of Sears department stores and the Kmart discount chain reported a net loss of $279 million, or $2.63 per share, compared with a profit of $189 million, or $1.78 per share, a year earlier.

Same-stores sales fell 3.6 percent at Sears Domestic unit, hurt by the prolonged winter.

Analysts on average had expected a loss of 60 cents per share, according to Thomson Reuters I/B/E/S.