Overall retail space could be reduced by between one-third to one-half over the next ten years, forecasts industry watcher Michael Burden.
The harsh assessment could indicate the round of store closings from Sears Holdings (SHLD), J.C. Penney (JCP), and Macy's (M) is only the tip of the iceberg. Watch for American Eagle Outfitters (AEO), Aeropostale (ARO), Dillard's (DDS), Nordstrom (JWN), and Kohl's (KSS) to enact some logical downsizing, while even Wal-Mart (WMT) and Best Buy (BBY) could surprise with some paring.
Analysts think stores at malls will be shuttered faster than open air outlets.
What to watch: Vibrant brands such as Michael Kors (KORS), Lululemon (LULU), and Vince (VNCE) could shift into a standalone mode as consumer demand stays strong for their on-trend products, but mall metrics trend weaker.