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Store Closures Surpassing Last Year

The retail sector is continuing to contract as the U.S. economy continues to struggle with anemic growth in the era of President Barack Obama, resulting in increased store closures.

As Men’s Wearhouse announced it is shutting down 250 stores, the New York Post pointed out this year’s store closings are already outpacing that of this time last year.

The paper lists nearly half-a-dozen firms that are closing stores. Kohl’s, Walmart, JCPenny, Gap, and Macy’s are all in the losing category, with closings already totaling a 33.2 percent rise above store closings in 2015.

But even 2015 was a 29 percent increase from the numbers in 2014, and 2014 was up from 2013.

“We are hitting a tipping point,” Richard Church, managing director of Discern Investment Analytics, told the Post. “We are in a weak demand environment that could meaningfully accelerate next year.”

By some analysis in 2014, the retail sector suffered a “tsunami” of store closings as retailers such as Sears, JCPenney, Radio Shack, office supply chain Staples, and Macy’s were hit by a wave of store closings. Other retailers, like Sam’s and Target, laid off thousands of people as they closed their stores.

Last year, the contraction continued with chains such as Dunkin’ Donuts closing stores. Macy’s also continued to lose outlets after closing its landmark store in Pittsburgh.

So far this year, Walmart has announced the closing of 269 stores, sportswear chain Sports Authority closed 140 stores, and once again, Macy’s is closing outlets.

Follow Warner Todd Huston on Twitter @warnerthuston or email the author at igcolonel@hotmail.com.

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