Apocalypse Now! was a 1979 Francis Ford Coppola film starring, among others, Northern Virginia resident Robert Duvall as Lieutenant Colonel Bill Kilgore. Little did Coppola know that his immortal film would foretell the retail store apocalypse of the 2010’s.
This year, in an effort to save their businesses, the following retailers will close hundreds of their stores, according to Fox Business.
Abercrombie & Fitch: 60 more stores are charted to close
Aerosoles: Only 4 of their 88 stores are definitely remaining open
American Apparel: They’ve filed for bankruptcy and all their stores have closed (or will soon)
BCBG: 118 stores have closed
Bebe: Bebe is history and all 168 stores have closed
Bon-Ton: They’ve filed for Chapter 11 and will be closing 48 stores.
The Children’s Place: They plan to close hundreds of stores by 2020 and are going digital.
CVS: They closed 70 stores but thousands still remain viable.
Foot Locker: They’re closing 110 underperforming stores shortly.
Guess: 60 stores will bite the dust this year.
Gymboree: A whopping 350 stores will close their doors for good this year
HHGregg: All 220 stores will be closed this year after the company filed for bankruptcy.
J. Crew: They’ll be closing 50 stores instead of the original 20 they had announced.
J.C. Penney: They’ve closed 138 stores and plan to turn all the remaining ones into toy stores.
The Limited: All 250 retail locations have been closed and they’ve gone digital in an effort to remain in business.
Macy’s: 7 more stores will soon close and more than 5000 employees will be laid off.
Michael Kors: They’ll close 125 stores this year.
Payless: They’ll be closing a whopping 800 stores this year after recently filing for bankruptcy.
Radio Shack: More than 1000 stores have been shut down this year, leaving them with only 70 stores nationwide.
Rue 21: They’ll be closing 400 stores this year.
Sears/Kmart: They’ve closed over 300 locations.
ToysRUs: They’ve filed for bankruptcy but at this point, have not announced store closures, and have in fact, stated their stores will remain open.
Wet Seal: This place is history – all 171 stores will soon be closed.
And with that, thousands of jobs go poof! Roughly 4.3 million Americans worked as retail salespeople as of last May, according to data released by the Labor Department Friday. On average, those working the country’s most common job make just $25,310 per year, far less than the national average wage of $45,790 and not enough to keep a family of five out of poverty, according to federal standards.
But it is more than the Amazon/Bezos model on online commerce, it is also that wage growth since 2007 and only in the most recent jobs report has average hourly earnings of all employees gotten back to 2009 levels in terms of YoY growth (but still below growth rates found before The Great Recession).
And lest we forget, The Fed’s zero interest rate policies help fuel a massive bubble in commercial real estate construction.
And here is Amazon’s Jeff Bezos slithering through the mud for more retailers to crush.