A World of Hurt: The Impact of COVID-19 on Retail

Director of Retail Studies Mark Cohen offers his view on the changes coming to large retailers, many of which had already seen declining sales and store closures before the pandemic hit.

Columbia Bizcast
Topic
Economics & Policy
Published

The past two months have seen unprecedented action among US retailers.

After weeks of closure due to COVID-19, Macy’s, The Gap and Best Buy all announced that they are preparing to reopen stores around the US, but with social distancing rules in place. Other brands, such as J. Crew and Neiman Marcus, filed for bankruptcy protections in the past week.

Mark Cohen, the director of retail studies, explains on this episode of Bizcast that the retail sector should be prepared for more dismal news in the coming months. “There’s an enormous amount of business being done on food and supplies, but for the most part retail is shut down,” he says.

Cohen offers his view on the changes coming to large retailers, many of which had already seen declining sales and store closures before the pandemic hit. He also discusses the role of government bailouts for the industry and speculates on when stores will be able to open their doors.

You can read more of Cohen’s insights on the impact of COVID-19 on retailers here.

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