Tech

The vast majority of Apple stores closed due to the Covid-19 pandemic are located in the U.S., Morgan Stanley says

Key Points
  • There were 100 Apple retail stores that were closed around the world at the end of last week, and 92 were located in the United States, according to Morgan Stanley analysis.
  • Apple says it is monitoring Covid-19 conditions community by community out of an "abundance of caution," and has reclosed more than 77 stores in the United States in recent weeks. 
  • Apple stores are often in major malls or business districts, making it a key indicator of how smoothly and where retail operations can restart amid the coronavirus pandemic
A staff member checks a customer's temperature at an Apple Store entrance during phase one of reopening after lockdown from the COVID-19 outbreak in New York City, New York, U.S. June 17, 2020.
Brendan McDermid | Reuters

The vast majority of Apple stores closed due to the Covid-19 pandemic are located in the United States, according to a new analysis from Morgan Stanley. 

One hundred Apple retail stores were closed around the world at the end of last week, and 92 were located in the United States, according to the note. Apple has 510 stores worldwide and 271 stores in the United States.

Apple was one of the first major companies to close its retail stores during the pandemic, and the company says it monitors the coronavirus situation to determine whether it is safe to operate its stores. 

The company's stores are often in major malls or business districts, making it a key indicator of how smoothly and where retail operations can restart amid the Covid-19 pandemic. The ratio of closures in the U.S. suggests Apple sees a significantly riskier environment for retail in its home country versus the rest of the world. 

Overall, closures are picking up again. Morgan Stanley analyst Katy Huberty wrote that last week saw the first net increase in Apple Store closures since March, when Apple first shut down all stores outside China. 

"As of July 7th, 410 of 510 Apple retail stores, or 80% of all stores, are reopened, down from 457 the week prior."

Last week, Apple said that it has reclosed 77 stores in the United States because of rising Covid-19 cases in many regions. Previously, it had been reopening many locations with social distancing, mandatory masking and curbside pickup or service appointment options. 

An Apple spokesman said at the time 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."

Apple has continued to reclose stores, including one location in Georgia and one in California this week. It also said on its website that it will close four additional stores in the Melbourne, Australia, area as the city goes on lockdown because of Covid-19.

Efforts to restart the United States economy are faltering as states are increasingly pausing plans to ease restrictions on businesses. On Tuesday, there was a record single-day spike of 60,000 new coronavirus cases reported in the U.S. over a 24-hour period. 

Correction: There was a record single-day spike of 60,000 new coronavirus cases reported Tuesday in the U.S. over a 24-hour period. An earlier version misstated the day. 

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