On the heels of department store behemoth Macy’s reporting of a 7.4 percent plunge in revenue for the first quarter of 2016, financial consultant and retail analyst Jan Kniffen told CNBC that falling sales at anchor stores like Macy’s and JCPenney likely spell doom for a good portion of shopping malls.
If you look into the future, not that far,” he said on the business program Squawk Box, “we’ve got 1,100 enclosed malls in America. We probably need 700.”
Even among the malls that survive the coming years, Kniffen predicts that only about 250 will thrive while the rest struggle to keep their doors open.
Currently, the U.S. has an estimated 48 square feet of retail space per citizen — by far the most on the planet. By comparison, the U.K. — who comes in at number two — has roughly half the retail space per person.