NEW YORK (TheStreet) -- For a company that is barely profitable, Amazon (AMZN) has resulted in a great many retailers losing money. That will surely be reflected when Wal-Mart (WMT), Kohl's (KSS), Nordstrom (JWN), and JCPenney's (JCP) report earnings this week. As Sonny Liston said about Muhammad Ali (then Cassius Clay) before their first fight, "He can run but he can't hide."
Amazon recently announced that it has reached an agreement with the United States Postal Service to start delivering packages on Sundays.
That could be the proverbial "knockout blow" for some retailers. There will no longer be any need for weekend trips to the shopping mall. While that will be harmful for Wal-Mart, Nordstrom, Kohl's and others, it could be potentially fatal for JC Penney.
Although the stock market is reaching record levels, the feeling on Main Street is hardly bullish.
Last month, the Conference Board announced that consumer confidence index plunged to 71.2 in October from 80.2 in September. The Thomson Reuters/University of Michigan data reported a plunge from September's 77.5 to 73.2 in October. The government shutdown, the impact of ObamaCare, and the concerns of the average American about their own personal financial situation has resulted in the loss of consumer confidence.
Since consumer spending accounts for about 70% of the American gross domestic product, that is very troubling, particularly for the traditional retail sector.
As a result, Americans are looking to save wherever possible and to also protect the environment. While gasoline prices have been slipping, fuel still accounts for a significant part of the budget for the average family in the U.S. In addition to being pressed for money, Americans do not have much free time, either.