Americans are doing less shopping in physical stores and more of it online, thanks to e-retailers such as Amazon, which carries nearly every product imaginable and can ship most of them to your door within two days or less. Already a leading seller of books, electronics, groceries, and furniture, Amazon has recently made a big push into clothing. Analysts say it’s expected to become the largest seller of apparel in the U.S. by next year (surpassing Macy’s). That shift in consumer spending has hurt traditional retailers, leading to store closings, layoffs, and bankruptcies. Macy’s recently announced it will close 100 stores this year, Sears said it will close 150 stores, and J.C. Penney said it will close 138 stores. Since October, nearly 90,000 Americans working in retail stores have lost their jobs
- How is Amazon represented in the cartoon, and what is it doing to the other retailers?
- What 1980s video game does the cartoonist reference? Why might he have made that choice?
- Some people worry that Amazon has become too big. What might be some of the dangers of having one company dominate the retail industry?
- How do you think the loss of retail jobs will affect the economy? Explain.
- Would a future without physical retail stores be a good thing? Why or why not?