These 10 big US retailers might not exist in 2018

By: Fiza Pirani, The Atlanta Journal-Constitution

Updated:

Just four months into 2017, 10 U.S. retailers have filed for bankruptcy. Last year, the total number of American retailers that declared bankruptcy was 18.

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And, according to new insights from S&P Global Market Intelligence that were released last week, there are more to come.

“The convenience of online shopping, and the downward pressure it has put on pricing, has radically altered consumer behavior,” S&P analysts wrote. “Most shoppers now browse for value online, and the younger cohort of the prized millennial demographic, some of whom may never have developed a penchant for long afternoons at the mall, clearly prefers that channel.”

To determine which companies are most at risk for being next to file bankruptcy, S&P researchers used a statistical model — the Probability of Default, or PD, Fundamentals model, which calculates companies’ PDs over a one- to five-year period.

They identified the 10 U.S. retailers with one-year PDs ranging from 6.11 percent, which indicates a significant risk, to 23.84 percent, which indicates a highly leveraged credit risk.

A day after the report was released, one of the 10 at-risk companies, Bebe Stores Inc., announced plans to close all 168 of its stores.

Here are the 10 U.S. retailers ranked in order of likelihood to default, according to S&P:

1. Sears Holdings Corp., Illinois, which owns Sears and Kmart.

PD: 23.84 percent.

2. DGSE Companies Inc., Texas, which owns Dallas Gold and Silver Exchange.

PD: 14.87 percent.

3. Appliance Recycling Centers of America Inc., Minnesota.

PD: 11.96 percent.

4. The Bon-Ton Stores Inc., Pennsylvania, which owns Bon-Ton department stores.

PD: 10.48 percent.

5. Bebe Stores Inc., California, which owns Bebe.

PD: 10.06 percent.

6. Destination XL Group Inc., Massachusetts, which ownsBig & Tall men's apparel.

PD: 8.08 percent.

7. Perfumania Holdings Inc., Florida, Perfumania.com.

PD: 7.24 percent.

8. Fenix Parts Inc., Illinois, an automotive parts recycler.

PD: 6.98 percent.

9. Tailored Brands Inc., Texas, which owns Men's Wearhouse, Moores and Joseph Abboud.

PD: 6.8 percent.

10. Sears Hometown and Outlet Stores Inc., Illinois, which owns Sears Hometown and Sears Outlet.

PD: 6.11 percent.

Read the full S&P Global Market Intelligence report for more about the companies and the effects their failures can have on other sectors.

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