Nordstrom Closing Stores Amid Coronavirus Outbreak

Nordstrom is closing all of its 380 stores in the U.S. and Canada, joining other retailers who are shutting their doors to combat the spread of the coronavirus.
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Nordstrom  (JWN) - Get Report announced Tuesday it was closing all of its 380 stores in the U.S. and Canada for two weeks, joining other retailers who are taking the unprecedented move of closing their retail operations to help limit the spread of the coronavirus.

“The health and safety of our customers and employees remain our top priority as we continue to make decisions during this rapidly evolving situation. We’re taking decisive actions across the business to help protect employees, customers and others in the communities we serve,” CEO Erik Nordstrom said in a statement.

The closures include all Nordstrom full-line stores as well as Nordstrom Rack, Trunk Club clubhouses and Jeffrey units. The company said it will continue to serve customers through its online business, which accounted for a third of sales in 2019.

The announcement came just a few hours after Saks Fifth Avenue said it would close its Manhattan and Philadelphia units for two weeks and follows other large retailers including Gap  (GPS) - Get Report, Nike  (NKE) - Get Report and Apple  (AAPL) - Get Report that have taken the unprecedented steps of shuttering their retail operations to help combat the disease.

They have also been pulling financial guidance as they continue to re-assess how broad-based declines in sales will impact earnings. Nordstrom joined that group on Tuesday, saying it was focusing on inventory and expense management and is “committed” to executing its savings plan of $200 million to $250 million in fiscal 2020.

The retailer said it was making further reductions to its expense and capital expenditure plans -and is currently suspending share repurchases.

Shares of Nordstrom were down 5% at $16.34 in morning trading on Tuesday. The stock fell 20.38% on Monday.