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CoStar's Look at Openings and Closings

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CoStar did some great digging--looking through retailer press releases and SEC filings--and compiled a fairly thorough look at retailer opening and closing trends for the past few years. The detailed findings are here.

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CoStar Advisor compiled the following table from researching the most recent quarterly reports, transcripts and SEC filings of the top retailers in most major U.S. retailing categories, from department and apparel stores, to jewelry and pet stores, and more. Key metrics including the current size of the chain, typical square footage of stores, as well as the number of store openings and closings in 2007 - 2010 are provided. Most figures stated are based on retailers' fiscal year schedules.

In aggregate, the retailers listed in this chart opened nearly 5,600 stores in 2007, and expect to have opened about 13% less stores in 2008 -- nearly 4,850 stores by the end of this fiscal year (which for most ends in January 2009). In stark contrast, the same retailers have so far announced only about 2,000 store openings in 2009.

With nearly 5,100 store closings (up 43% over total store closings in 2007) already identified by these retailers for this fiscal year(and more expected to trickle in as fourth quarter reports surface), there will be an aggregate net loss in retail stores at these retail chains. This is a worrying statistic when we consider that, according to CoStar Property, at least 98.6 million square feet of retail space 15,000 sq. ft. or larger was added to the national retail landscape this year.

According to our calculation, the categories with the largest amount of net store closings (mapped against total store openings) in 2008 are home accessories/furniture, with a net loss of 1,085 stores; electronics with a net loss of 715 stores; and jewelry, with a net loss of 400 stores.

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Elaine Misonzhnik

Senior associate editor Elaine Misonzhnik has been writing for National Real Estate Investor since June 2006 and has covered commercial real estate for more than 12 years. She first became...
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