Since the summer of 2017, when retail bankruptcies were reaching Great Recession-era levels, Retail Dive has compiled lists of distressed retailers potentially at risk of bankruptcy.

For about the past year and a half, Retail Dive reporters and editors have generated the list with data from CreditRiskMonitor, which has a proprietary metric (FRISK) that measures the risk of a company filing for bankruptcy within 12 months. It’s based on several factors, including credit ratings, stock volatility, financial metrics and proprietary data around the use of CreditRiskMonitor’s platform.

From FRISK data, we cull the retailers relevant to our coverage of the industry (i.e., non-food consumer-facing retailers with a significant U.S. presence) that have the highest risk scores. Since April 2018, this method has led to lists with eight to 12 retailers.

This year, compiling the list the same way, CreditRiskMonitor data yielded 28 retailers with significant bankruptcy risk.

That is more than double the number on any of our previous lists. It is an eye-popping figure, so much so that Retail Dive reached out to CreditRiskMonitor executives to make sure there were no changes in the FRISK methodology. There were not.

That leaves the possibility that there is just more risk in the retail world than there was when we compiled these lists in the past.

You can check out the Retail Dive list of those retailers in jeopardy of bankruptcy here.

For marketers, the retailers in jeopardy of closing – and others that may be added to the list – present yet another challenge in these uncertain times.  When businesses close, the impact will be widespread and, for marketers,  will mean the loss of jobs and losses to agencies that worked with those businesses, leading to possible agency downsizing.

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