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    Kmart Eyeing May 5 Bankruptcy Exit

    CHICAGO -- Having cleared away most of its legal hurdles yesterday, beleaguered Kmart appears to be nearing the end of the line to emerge from more than a year of bankruptcy.

    CHICAGO -- Having cleared away most of its legal hurdles yesterday, beleaguered Kmart appears to be nearing the end of the line to emerge from more than a year of bankruptcy.

    "I was a little surprised by how much progress, the rapid progress we were able to make (Monday)," said Kmart c.e.o. Julian Day in an Associated Press report. "There's still a lot to do, but I think that anyone in my position would be encouraged."

    Facing 188 creditor objections and the Easter and Passover holidays, Kmart's attorneys gave up on trying to gain approval for its reorganization plan by U.S. Bankruptcy Judge Susan Pierson Sonderby. The company now hopes to leave bankruptcy on May 5.

    When court resumed yesterday, Kmart's lead attorney and staff had resolved 101 of the objections, which ranged from Wal-Mart and Capital Factors Inc., which holds $20 million in unsecured Kmart debt, to landlords worried about local leases.

    Although company officials are reportedly optimistic that approval can come as early as today, a courtroom is reserved for tomorrow in the event proceedings are further delayed.

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