Breaking News
0
Ad-Free Version. Upgrade your Investing.com experience. Save up to 40% More details

British retail to lose further 5,000 jobs in blow to economy

Stock MarketsJul 09, 2020 10:31AM ET
Saved. See Saved Items.
This article has already been saved in your Saved Items
 
2/2 © Reuters. Outbreak of the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) in Britain 2/2

By Kate Holton

LONDON (Reuters) - Britain's high street faces more than 5,000 job cuts after two of its biggest names said that customers were unlikely to return to their old shopping habits after the coronavirus crisis, in the latest blow to the country's ailing economy.

Health and beauty chain Boots and department store John Lewis on Thursday joined other retailers in warning that they had to close stores to survive after customers moved online and remained wary of returning to town centres.

Boots, owned by Walgreens Boots Alliance (O:WBA), announced 4,000 cuts in a blow to British finance minister Rishi Sunak, who announced his latest plan to save jobs on Wednesday, while John Lewis said it could lose 1,300.

Thousands of job losses have already been announced by the menswear shop TM Lewin, department stores Harrods and Debenhams, fashion stores Oasis, Warehouse, and Arcadia, and the DIY outfit Travis Perkins (L:TPK) since the coronavirus outbreak.

John Lewis, known as middle England's favourite department store, said it proposed to close eight stores as online would make up to 70% of sales this year and next, from 40% pre-crisis.

"We believe closures are necessary to help us secure the sustainability of the Partnership," said Sharon White, chairman of the John Lewis Partnership.

A spokesman for British Prime Minister Boris Johnson said the government stood ready to help after Boots also said it had decided to close 48 optician stores after its UK shopper numbers plunged 85% in April at the height of the lockdown.

The world's sixth-biggest economy shrank by 25% in March and April and could be heading for its biggest fall in 300 years in 2020, with an unemployment rate on course to more than double to about 10%, according to official projections.

That fear of what could lie ahead has put an intolerable strain on retailers, already battling high rents, business rate taxes, tight margins and a rapid shift online.

Since the outbreak, many have failed to pay their rent, in turn hitting commercial property owners such as Intu which has called in administrators due to high debts.

Julie Palmer, partner and restructuring expert at Begbies Traynor, said many businesses would implement drastic change.

"Investment will be poured into parts of the business that are strengthening and pulled from areas that are unsuitable for these modern ways of trading," she said.

British retail to lose further 5,000 jobs in blow to economy
 

Related Articles

Michelin's third-quarter sales beat expectations
Michelin's third-quarter sales beat expectations By Reuters - Oct 25, 2021

PARIS (Reuters) - French tyre maker Michelin (PA:MICP) reported better-than expected third quarter sales on Monday, thanks to sustained demand from truck makers and its...

Add a Comment

Comment Guidelines

We encourage you to use comments to engage with other users, share your perspective and ask questions of authors and each other. However, in order to maintain the high level of discourse we’ve all come to value and expect, please keep the following criteria in mind:  

  •            Enrich the conversation, don’t trash it.

  •           Stay focused and on track. Only post material that’s relevant to the topic being discussed. 

  •           Be respectful. Even negative opinions can be framed positively and diplomatically. Avoid profanity, slander or personal attacks directed at an author or another user. Racism, sexism and other forms of discrimination will not be tolerated.

  • Use standard writing style. Include punctuation and upper and lower cases. Comments that are written in all caps and contain excessive use of symbols will be removed.
  • NOTE: Spam and/or promotional messages and comments containing links will be removed. Phone numbers, email addresses, links to personal or business websites, Skype/Telegram/WhatsApp etc. addresses (including links to groups) will also be removed; self-promotional material or business-related solicitations or PR (ie, contact me for signals/advice etc.), and/or any other comment that contains personal contact specifcs or advertising will be removed as well. In addition, any of the above-mentioned violations may result in suspension of your account.
  • Doxxing. We do not allow any sharing of private or personal contact or other information about any individual or organization. This will result in immediate suspension of the commentor and his or her account.
  • Don’t monopolize the conversation. We appreciate passion and conviction, but we also strongly believe in giving everyone a chance to air their point of view. Therefore, in addition to civil interaction, we expect commenters to offer their opinions succinctly and thoughtfully, but not so repeatedly that others are annoyed or offended. If we receive complaints about individuals who take over a thread or forum, we reserve the right to ban them from the site, without recourse.
  • Only English comments will be allowed.

Perpetrators of spam or abuse will be deleted from the site and prohibited from future registration at Investing.com’s discretion.

Write your thoughts here
 
Are you sure you want to delete this chart?
 
Post
Post also to:
 
Replace the attached chart with a new chart ?
1000
Your ability to comment is currently suspended due to negative user reports. Your status will be reviewed by our moderators.
Please wait a minute before you try to comment again.
Thanks for your comment. Please note that all comments are pending until approved by our moderators. It may therefore take some time before it appears on our website.
 
Are you sure you want to delete this chart?
 
Post
 
Replace the attached chart with a new chart ?
1000
Your ability to comment is currently suspended due to negative user reports. Your status will be reviewed by our moderators.
Please wait a minute before you try to comment again.
Add Chart to Comment
Confirm Block

Are you sure you want to block %USER_NAME%?

By doing so, you and %USER_NAME% will not be able to see any of each other's Investing.com's posts.

%USER_NAME% was successfully added to your Block List

Since you’ve just unblocked this person, you must wait 48 hours before renewing the block.

Report this comment

I feel that this comment is:

Comment flagged

Thank You!

Your report has been sent to our moderators for review
Disclaimer: Fusion Media would like to remind you that the data contained in this website is not necessarily real-time nor accurate. All CFDs (stocks, indexes, futures) and Forex prices are not provided by exchanges but rather by market makers, and so prices may not be accurate and may differ from the actual market price, meaning prices are indicative and not appropriate for trading purposes. Therefore Fusion Media doesn`t bear any responsibility for any trading losses you might incur as a result of using this data.

Fusion Media or anyone involved with Fusion Media will not accept any liability for loss or damage as a result of reliance on the information including data, quotes, charts and buy/sell signals contained within this website. Please be fully informed regarding the risks and costs associated with trading the financial markets, it is one of the riskiest investment forms possible.
Continue with Google
or
Sign up with Email