12 Retailers That May Soon Disappear Forever

Remember Circuit City, Woolworths, Linens ‘n Things and Sam Goody?

(Image credit: Getty Images)

Remember Circuit City, Woolworths, Linens ‘n Things and Sam Goody? Each of those retailers was once a powerhouse in their respective slivers of the retailing world. But time and competition eventually caught up with – and overwhelmed – those once-great shopping venues.

That can and likely will happen to other retailers in the future. The very nature of the retailing industry is a competitive chase for a limited number of consumer dollars. Many companies think they have something unique to offer shoppers, but the reality is not enough of them do. Some, in fact, miss the boat so badly or lose touch with consumers for so long that they have no choice to close up shop in years to come.

Here’s a look at 12 retailers that may suffer the same fate. Each suffers from a lack of customers, a lack of money, a lack of viable prospects or a combination of some or all of those issues. Many of them have already shuttered locations, and/or are in the process of closing stores in 2018. Thus, it would not be surprising if these companies eventually made their way into the annals of retail stores that “used to be.”

To be sure, it’s possible that any of these companies could dig their way out of dire straits, generating large returns for loyal investors, so shareholders should consider our picks and make their own conclusions. But remember: It’s better to jump off a sinking ship a year early than a year late.


Data is as of March 20, 2018. Click on ticker-symbol links in each slide for current share prices and more.

James Brumley
Contributing Writer, Kiplinger.com
James Brumley is a former stock broker, registered investment adviser and Director of Research for an options-focused newsletter. He's now primarily a freelance writer, tapping more than a decade's worth of broad experience to help investors get more out of the market. With a background in technical analysis as well as fundamental analysis, James touts stock-picking strategies that combine the importance of company performance with the power of stock-trade timing. He believes this dual approach is the only way an investor has a shot at consistently beating the market. James' work has appeared at several websites including Street Authority, Motley Fool, Kapitall and Investopedia. When not writing as a journalist, James works on his book explaining his multi-pronged approach to investing.