Some 30% of Swedish retailers fear that they would be forced to close their operations in the event that the coronavirus crisis were to persist for another two months.
According to business group Svensk Handel, which undertook the research, retailers operating in the fashion, home improvement, sporting goods and other non-food sectors, said that they are fearful about their future liquidity in the event of a prolonged situation.
Half of the retailers surveyed said that they have lost at least 40% of their sales since the crisis began, while one in ten has seen sales plummet by as much as 80%.
In the wholesale trade, where one in three firms have lost more than 40% in sales, 20% of businesses are similarly fearful about a lasting crisis.
"For every day that the crippling effect of the coronavirus has on businesses, companies' liquidity problems deepen," said Karin Johansson, CEO of Svensk Handel, adding that the potential rate of closure would be "unparalleled in modern times".
She called for the introduction of "substantial" rent reductions in order to alleviate pressure on challenged operators.
© 2020 European Supermarket Magazine – your source for the latest retail news. Article by Stephen Wynne-Jones. Click subscribe to sign up to ESM: The European Supermarket Magazine.