Visualizing the Retail Apocalypse
Bloomberg has created a series of data visualizations illustrating the “retail apocalypse” in the United States—the mass closing of retail stores that began in 2016. The visualizations highlight the high number of delinquent real estate loans in many metro areas despite high consumer confidence, low unemployment, and overall economic growth, all of which typically would be a boon for retail. The visualizations also portray data that suggests the problems facing the retail industry could get worse. For example, the data suggests the number of retail jobs could continue to decline in many areas of the country that rely heavily on retail employment. In addition, the data shows that the retail industry owns a large amount of risky debt that will come due over the next five years.