The coronavirus widened the gap between retail's winners and losers, and for some in the latter group, the long-awaited end to the pandemic may come too late. Analysts aren't holding out much hope for a few of the companies on USA TODAY's list of the most vulnerable retailers heading into the new year. They were barely holding on when the retail landscape was comparatively untroubled – how will they survive in the midst of pandemic? A widespread rollout of the vaccine will take time, and time is exactly what some of these retailers no longer have. And no matter how much data the experts study, the coronavirus remains the wild card.
"It really comes down to how long COVID persists," said Chris Hudgins, who analyzes retail data for research firm S&P Global Market Intelligence.