Store Closings Have Been Fast and Furious in 2017

It’s been a rough couple of weeks for U.S. retail news.

On April 4, we reported on the roundly disappointing fiscal first quarter results from the nation’s leading retailers.

And now a Credit Suisse report released on Thursday reveals that year-to-date store closings in 2017 have already topped the historically high number of closings in 2008.

Roughly 2,880 retail stores have closed this year. In comparison, 1,153 closed during the same period last year. And there could be more than 8,640 store closings by the year’s end, according to Credit Suisse.

Due to the mass closings, around 30,000 retail workers lost their jobs in March—and more than 60,000 jobs have been eliminated since January.

Among the major retailers scaling back their footprint significantly are Sears, Macy’s, J.C. Penney, BeBe, Abercrombie & Fitch, Guess, and Ralph Lauren.

Some, like Abercrombie & Fitch, are closing doors by letting leases expires (the retailer will shutter 60 stores this year using this method). Others, such as Bebe and Kenneth Cole, are moving to an online-only retail model.

Photo: Macy’s Aventura Mall in Miami, courtesy of Macy’s

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JCK Magazine Editor