As Shoppers Shift to Online Sources, Stores Suffer

Call it the Retail Apocalypse.

As more people turn to online shopping, expect devastating outcomes for traditional big-name merchants.

A recent Moody's analysis puts 22 retailers in danger of bankruptcy. That's the worst level since the great recession.

Texas-based J-C Penney is among the brands in peril. The Plano-based giant has joined Sears, Macy's and others in closing hundreds of stores.

Ten major U.S. companies have filed for bankruptcy this year – already more than last year’s total – with some 90,000-plus jobs lost in the process.

Retailers that have slipped into bankruptcy have included Payless, Rue 21, The Limited and Gymboree.

Store closings have been undertaken by Foot Locker, Office Depot, Staples and GameStop.

Credit Suisse predicts that 8,000 retail locations will close for good by the end of the year.

Still, Moody's says most retailers are "fundamentally healthy" -- and there are pockets of expansion in stronger and more diversified markets, like Houston.

The bright spots: consumers are still spending, even if it’s with different habits and increasingly online … and diversified economies like Houston's are handling the change and still charting growth.

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