A virtual school year will likely push retailers even closer to the brink. Why it matters: Back-to-school season is the second-biggest revenue-generating period for the retail sector, after the holidays. But retailers say typical shopping sprees will be smaller with students learning at home — another setback for their industry, which has seen a slew of store closures and bankruptcy filings since the pandemic hit. By the numbers: Research firm GlobalData expects the lowest level of back-to-school spending for elementary and high school students since 2015 — while spending for back-to-college shopping would crater nearly 40% from last year. Read more at Axios.