Ask anyone running a store and they’ll tell you that it’s tough to be in the retail business. Merchants big and small are struggling to meet the demands of a customer base that is demanding better service, lower prices and products both in-store and from the comfort of their homes. A new report from investor research firm Moody’s certainly confirms that. According to last week’s report, bankruptcies in the retail sector were at a record high during the first quarter of 2018. There were nine defaults in the sector — including Sears and Claire’s — during the three months ended March 31. Tops Friendly Markets, a supermarket chain, and the Bon-Ton department store chain also filed for bankruptcy during the period. The only non-U.S. default that occurred in the first quarter was Britain-based BrightHouse Group, which sells rent-to-own refurbished sofas, televisions and refrigerators. Defaults on corporate debt from the retail sector in the past three months made up almost one-third of defaults by corporations in all industries. Read more at The Washington Post.