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Originally published July 12 2015

Major retail chains shutting down thousands of stores; are you prepared and self-reliant?

by Ethan A. Huff, staff writer

(NaturalNews) There is chatter across the web about dozens of major retail chains that are expected to permanently shutter a large number of their store locations this year. Popular names like Abercrombie & Fitch, Barnes & Noble, Chico's, Children's Place, Coach, Fresh & Easy, Gymboree, JCPenney, Macy's, Office Depot, Pier One, Pep Boys, and many others are named as soon-to-be casualties in what some news sources are now referring to as the coming "retail apocalypse."

The Economic Collapse Blog pins 2015 as a significant "turning point" for the U.S. economy, ominously warning that at least 6,000 retail store locations are expected to close this year based on company announcements. Many American consumers are already witnessing the birth pangs of this retail apocalypse as brick-and-mortar department, specialty, and even food shops close their doors for good.

Take a look at the following list of companies that have announced upcoming store closures:

Rising costs of living and dwindling incomes have left middle class with minimal extra spending money

As you'll notice, many of these companies are household names that sell everyday products as opposed to specialty or commodity products. Several major grocery store chains are represented here, as are major department stores like Sears and JCPenney that have been around forever. While this might simply be a sweeping scale-back for these companies, the closures point to a much more serious economic reality.

With a significant bulk of consumer spending now taking place online, brick-and-mortar stores are struggling to bring in enough revenue to warrant keeping their physical locations open for business. When combined with a massive reduction in consumer spending due to a rapidly shrinking economy, it appears that we're seeing a recipe for major retail failure in the coming weeks and months.

"What we find is that over the past 6 months we had a tremendous drop in true discretionary consumer spending," writes Thad Beversdorf on his blog First Rebuttal. "[This] confirms the fundamental theory that consumer spending is showing the initial signs of a severe pull back."

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