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Apple to reclose 30 more retail stores as coronavirus cases spike

Apple will close 30 additional stores in the United States by Thursday, the company said, bringing the total number of reclosures in the United States to 77 as Covid-19 cases rapidly rise in several regions around the country.

Stores in Alabama, California, Georgia, Idaho, Louisiana, Nevada and Oklahoma will close Thursday. Other stores in Florida, Mississippi, Texas and Utah are closed as of Wednesday. Apple has 271 stores in the United States.

Apple shares dropped on the announcement to go negative during trading on Wednesday.

Apple stores tend to be in highly trafficked malls and shopping centers, and the fact that they are reclosing in such large numbers can be seen as a negative indicator of how smoothly retail operations can restart in the United States amid the coronavirus.

An Apple spokesman said in a statement: “Due to current COVID-19 conditions in some of the communities we serve, we are temporarily closing stores in these areas. We take this step with an abundance of caution as we closely monitor the situation and we look forward to having our teams and customers back as soon as possible.”

The closings announced on Wednesday include the last two remaining stores open in Florida, as well as a number of stores around the Los Angeles area.

Apple was one of the first companies to shut its stores around the world in response to the Covid-19 pandemic. Stores started to reopen focusing on curbside service in the U.S. with safety measures including masks and temperature checks, but the rising rates of Covid-19 have forced the company to close many of its locations in hard-hit states.

CNBC

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