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Retail Defaults Hit Record High in First Quarter, According to Moody’s - ABI

The number of retailers defaulting on loans hit a record high in the first quarter of 2018, a new report shows, affirming many chains in the sector are still struggling under suffocating debt loads and changing business needs, CNBC.com reported. There were 28 total defaults by corporations in the latest period, Moody's Investors Service found, compared with 23 defaults during the same period a year ago. "Stresses in the retail sector have weighed on the operating earnings of department stores, discount stores and drug stores in particular," said Sharon Ou, vice president and senior credit officer at Moody's. CNBC reported last month that Moody's is expecting retailers' maturities to spike in 2019, meaning many significant debts are coming due. Companies on that list with loans to pay include Sears, Neiman Marcus and Guitar Center. These companies are also targeted as ones that could struggle to refinance or fund their loans.

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