For years, many analysts in the retail and commercial real estate sector have predicted the death of U.S. shopping malls. But a closer look at recent industry data shows that despite sweeping closures and thinning foot traffic, malls are far from dead.
While recent reports paint a gloomy outlook — an April report from Cowen and Co. predicted that as many as 20 percent of stores at some mass and middle-market mall retailers will close in the next five years, and a Credit Suisse report from May forecast that 25 percent of all U.S. malls could shutter by 2022 — those projections don’t portend the imminent death of malls, according to other industry experts who say it’s more that the industry is correcting itself in a country that built too many retail centers over the past few decades.. . . more