J.C. Penney posts steeper-than-expected drop in same-store sales

May 21 (Reuters) - J.C. Penney Co Inc reported a steeper-than-expected drop in quarterly comparable-store sales on Tuesday, hit by the exit from selling major appliances and in-store furniture categories, sending its shares down 10% in early trading.

The Plano, Texas-based company said sales at stores open for at least 12 months fell 5.5% in the first quarter, bigger than analysts' average estimate of a 4.21% fall, according to IBES data from Refinitiv.

The company's net loss nearly doubled to $154 million, or 48 cents per share, in the three months ended May 4. (Reporting by Aishwarya Venugopal in Bengaluru; Editing by Sriraj Kalluvila)