From Shipments To Cash Flow, Pandemic Uncertainty Makes Reopening Harder

If only it were as easy as unlocking the doors. With states gradually lifting restrictions on businesses and residents put in place in response to the COVID-19 pandemic, the retailers that moved to shut down their store fleets in March have been gradually opening back up, in phases, often with traffic restrictions and other new health protocols. But there was no precedent for the closures and the public health crisis surrounding them, and so there can be no certainty, or anything close to it, around recovery either. Credit Suisse analyst Michael Binetti said in an emailed client note in May that his team expected “widely-varying results as stores start to open.” While there was “real evidence of strong sales & pent up demand” in some categories on reopening, he also noted those trends “could change quickly,” given that stores were reopening into a recessionary economy and risks from the coronavirus remain. Read more at Retail Dive.