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These Calif. Retailers On Verge Of Bankruptcy, New Moody's Report Says

The ranks of distressed retailers is set to keep growing over the next 12 to 18 months, and 14 that have stores in California are on the verge of bankruptcy and could be subject to closure, according to a newly released Moody's Investors Service report.

Overall, 22 national retailers had debt ratings of Caa or lower — higher than the number of bankrupt-leaning retailers during the Great Recession of 2008-2009. Debt rated at Caa or below is the lowest rank on Moody's credit rating spectrum. Fourteen of those have California locations.

"The majority of retailers remain fundamentally healthy," Moody's Lead Retail Analyst Charlie O'Shea said in a press release. "But as select groups of retailers continue to deteriorate — in particular department stores and specialty retailers — we believe the distressed ranks will keep growing, fueled in part by distinct vulnerabilities."

Here is the list of retailers with stores in California that are on the verge of bankruptcy:

  • Charlotte Russe

  • Charming Charlie

  • Claire's Stores

  • Cole Haan

  • David's Bridal

  • Eddie Bauer

  • Gymboree

  • J. Crew

  • Kmart

  • Neiman Marcus

  • Nine West

  • Savers

  • Sears

  • True Religion Apparel

The report, "US Retail and Apparel: B2/B3 Issuers Gain Spotlight As Distressed Retail and Apparel Ranks Grow," provides an overview of factors that impact companies at these rating levels. Click here to obtain the full report.

Some of these retailers, such as Sears and Kmart, have already announced store closings in California. Earlier this year, Sears announced it would close 150 Kmart and Sears stores by the spring, part of a "difficult but necessary step as we take actions to strengthen the company’s operations and fund its transformation."

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