America's Big Retail Crisis Greatly Accelerating in Early 2019
WASHINGTON - February 15, 2019
Official statistics show that retail trade in the US is below the norm by 30% of total sales. Although this has been happening for years, the numbers escalated dramatically in early 2019. The Commerce Department announced a 1.2% decline on Thursday, the largest since September 2009, when the economy came out of recession.
Other data shows December online internet sales (non-store retailers) tumbled 3.9% -- the biggest drop ever. Overall, online trading accounts for less than 10% of the industry.
According to businessmen of small production, tens, hundreds and even thousands of shops are forced to close because of the inability to cover rent, taxes and general production. Also, a big problem is the limited supply of goods, which are massively used only for large-scale production. Traders were recently hoping that the holiday season would change the situation, but it didn’t happen.
In fact, retail sales in the United States suffered "the biggest drop in more than nine years" during December.
Coresight Research released an outlook of 2019 store closures Wednesday, saying there's "no light at the end of the tunnel."
According to the other Global Market Research firm's report, six weeks into 2019, U.S. retailers have announced 2,187 closings, up 23% compared to last year. Those closings include 749 Gymboree stores, 251 Shopko stores, and 94 Charlotte Russe locations.
U.S. discount retailer Payless ShoeSource Inc plans to close all of its approximately 2,300 stores when it files for bankruptcy later this month for the second time in as many years, people familiar with the matter said on Thursday.
And Payless is far from alone. February retail bankruptcies are already ahead by a third compared to the middle of last year.
Bankruptcies are also continuing at a rapid pace "with the number of filings in the first six weeks of 2019 already at one-third of last year's total," the report states.
Eddie Lampert has convinced investors to give things one more try with the department store Sears this year. But it's clear now they're going to zero, and so is JC Penney, and so are a whole host of other major retailers.
At the time of its October 2018 bankruptcy filing, Sears Holdings had approximately 700 stores and some 68,000 employees. Going forward it has promised to retain approximately 45,000 employees.
Another sharp drop in stores is expected this spring, said Lampert.
In the end, millions upon millions of square feet of retail space is going to be sitting vacant. Some of the more economically depressed areas of the country are going to closely resemble ghost towns, and we're going to see a commercial real estate crisis that is off the charts.
In addition, among the mass closures of retail outlets are:
Victoria's Secret - 20 stores
CROCS - 47 stores
JCrew - 50 stores
Abercrombie and Fitch - 60 stores
Sam's Club - 63 stores
Claire's - 92 stores
Brookstone - 102 stores
Foot Locker - 110 stores
GES - 120 stores
Michael Kors - 125 stores
JCPenney - 140 stores last year and 8 more in January
Kmart - 160 stores
Banana Republic - 200 stores
GNC - 200 stores
More than 7 million Americans are 90 days or more behind on their vehicle loans as of the end of 2018, according to data released Tuesday by the New York Federal Reserve. That’s more than 1 million higher than the peak in 2010 as the country was recovering from its worst downturn since the Great Depression.
How is that possible?
While the authorities say that everything is fine, it's clear everything is definitely not "just fine."
Economic activity is slowing down dramatically, and many believe that things are about to get a whole lot worse. In fact, American stockbroker Peter Schiff warns that what is ahead "is going to be worse than what we now call the Great Recession."
“We've just created a massive amount of inflation. Quantitative easing is just a euphemism for inflation. That's what inflation is – expanding the money supply. Printing up money and buying government bonds is the definition of inflation. The Fed has been inflating like crazy,” Schiff said.
People are going to realize that we checked into the monetary roach motel that the media has been talking about from the beginning and that there’s no way out, and then the dollar is going to fall like a stone.
When they find out that it's never over and it didn't work, then there's going to be nothing propping up the dollar and it's going to drop like a stone; the price of gold is going to take off, and the recession that we're entering into, which is going to be an inflationary recession, is going to be worse than what we now call the Great Recession.
Maybe it's taken longer than we might have thought to play out, but this is the beginning of the end.
The retail apocalypse is accelerating, America's debt crisis is starting to reach a critical level, and very challenging days are approaching for everyone.