Major retailers are closing U.S. stores amid coronavirus outbreak



Nike and Apple are among the big names closing retail locations in the U.S. due to the coronavirus outbreak. CNBC’s Courtney Reagan reports.

Major retailers across the U.S. are shutting down their stores or reducing hours in response to the coronavirus pandemic.

The decisions, while smart for customers, workers and the community at large, will no doubt weigh heavily on the already-stressed retail industry. One analyst has estimated this could result in a record year for permanent retail store closures, which could mount to over 15,000.

Jefferies analyst Randal Konick said he expects to see more retailers close stores, and if they don’t, they likely will see little demand as malls become ghost towns.

“With stores accounting for 75% of sales for most retailers, we anticipate massive EPS declines for 1Q, especially as most retailers appear to be paying employees during the 2 week closures,” Konick wrote in a research note.

Meantime, retailers that sell essentials like food, medicine and cleanings supplies have seen a surge in demand. Some grocers have been forced to limit the number of certain products to prevent hoarding, and employees are working hard to keep items on the shelves.

Here are some of the announcements retailers have made so far.

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