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Friday, October 23, 2020  Spokane, Washington  Est. May 19, 1883
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Froma Harrop: Downtown retail bucks dying-mall trend

Wausau, Wisconsin, for example, has not one vacant storefront in the entire downtown shopping area. The Wall Street Journal singled out Wausau as an important case study because it is America’s most middle-class city.

Retail woes drag takeover premiums to lowest level since 2008

The retail trends that are keeping U.S. shoppers away from malls are also putting a damper on deal-making. The number of mergers involving apparel, shoes and jewelry dropped 12 percent to 115 in the past year. And the transactions that are getting done are fetching the smallest premiums since the recession in 2008. They plunged to 3.4 percent from 23 percent a year earlier, according to data compiled by Bloomberg.

Stores closing at a record pace as e-commerce chews up retailers

The rapid descent of so many retailers has left shopping malls with hundreds of slots to fill, and the pain could be just beginning. More than 10 percent of U.S. retail space, or nearly 1 billion square feet, may need to be closed, converted to other uses or renegotiated for lower rent in coming years, according to data provided to Bloomberg by CoStar Group.

Malls get creative in their attempts to win back customers

Nationwide, older malls are trying to reinvent themselves – either by spending millions of dollars on extensive renovations or knocking down buildings and starting over. Increasingly, malls across the U.S. are looking to expand beyond traditional retail outlets.

University City Mall demolition underway

If you grew up in the Spokane Valley in the 1970s and 1980s, chances are you sat on Santa’s lap at University City Mall. And maybe you got to buy your back-to-school shoes at J.C. Penney and a treat from Orange Julius for the trip home. If that’s the case, then hold on to your memories: The mall, which opened in 1965 and served as the prime destination for Spokane Valley shoppers for decades, is being torn down.

Protests shut town three malls near Ferguson

Demonstrators temporarily shut down three large malls in suburban St. Louis on one of the busiest shopping days of the year and then marched in front of the Ferguson police department to protest a grand jury’s recent decision not to indict the police officer who fatally shot 18-year-old Michael Brown.

Finding new ways to draw customers is changing how malls look and operate

Friday night can be a bit quiet inside Silver Lake Mall, with a trickle of shoppers walking the beat between anchor stores. But down the west corridor near Sears, a crowd starts to gather. Then the music begins – country, folk, bluegrass and gospel. It’s a weekly acoustic jam that began nearly two years ago and has built a loyal fan base.

U.S. shoppers crowd malls all night long

Bargain shoppers, braving rain or frigid weather, crowded the nation's stores and malls in the wee hours of the night to get their hands on deals from TVs to toys on Black Friday.

Mall giant makes bid for General Growth

LOS ANGELES — Simon Property Group, the nation’s largest shopping mall owner, made a $10 billion hostile bid today to acquire ailing rival General Growth Properties.

Stores strategize in light of last year’s difficult holiday season

Retailers across the region have just one wish: Whatever else happens, please spare us a winter like last year. Consumers are still in a cautious state of mind, but store owners and managers say they’re going to work hard to get them to spend money over the next five weeks.

Mall shake-up

When Chicago-based General Growth Properties Inc. filed for bankruptcy in April, the news set off alarms for dozens of Spokane and North Idaho retailers doing business in three area malls owned by that company. Their concerns eased once General Growth, the second-largest mall operator in the country, explained the bankruptcy will have minimal impact on the 220 malls it operates.