COVID-19 and Retail: A Macy’s Case Study

Analysis by Dr. Victor Calanog & Keegan Kelly 

With the U.S. economy poised to contract at a historic rate in the second quarter of 2020, retail properties face an exceptionally bleak near term. Under siege from the pressure of online commerce over the last two decades, retailers like Macy’s were already in a relatively weak position before COVID-19 reached pandemic status. On February 5, Macy’s announced that they were closing 125 stores across 19 states—a decision not related to the coronavirus situation. On March 17, the firm preemptively closed all 775 of its locations to prevent the spread of the virus.

This analysis will focus on retail properties around the nation that have Macy’s as a tenant, and are therefore directly impacted. Download to gain visibility into the locations that appear to be at greatest risk


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Victor Calanog, PhD CRE® is the Head of CRE Economics at Moody’s Analytics REIS. He and his team of economists and analysts are responsible for the firm’s market forecasting, valuation, and real estate portfolio analytics services. He holds a PhD in Applied Economics and Management Science, trained by a dissertation committee composed of faculty from the Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania and Harvard Business School.

Keegan Kelly is an Associate Economist with Moody’s Analytics REIS.


Looking for additional insights? Explore our interactive COVID-19 map to analyze the potential impact on commercial real estate markets.


You may also find our website dedicated to COVID-19 to be helpful during this time. Visit for our latest research and views on the credit and economic impact of COVID-19. This site brings together insights from across Moody’s to help you better understand the financial implications of the outbreak.