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By Kerry Close
May 12, 2016
A customer enters a Macy's Inc. store at the La Cantera outdoor mall in San Antonio, Texas, U.S., on Wednesday, June 19, 2013. Consumer sentiment climbed last week from a two-month low as Americans views on the economy were the least pessimistic in five years. Photographer: Jennifer Whitney/Bloomberg via Getty Images
A customer enters a Macy's Inc. store at the La Cantera outdoor mall in San Antonio, Texas, U.S., on Wednesday, June 19, 2013. Consumer sentiment climbed last week from a two-month low as Americans views on the economy were the least pessimistic in five years. Photographer: Jennifer Whitney/Bloomberg via Getty Images
Bloomberg

Shopping malls are rapidly losing their appeal with shoppers.

About one-third of malls in the U.S. will shut their doors in the coming years, retail analyst Jan Kniffen told CNBC Thursday. His prediction comes in the wake of Macy’s reporting its worst consecutive same-store sales decline since the financial crisis.

Macy’s and its fellow retailers in American malls are challenged by an oversupply of retail space as customers migrate toward online shopping, as well as fast fashion retailers like H&M and off-price stores such as T.J. Maxx. As a result, about 400 of the country’s 1,100 enclosed malls will fail in the upcoming years. Of those that remain, he predicts that about 250 will thrive and the rest will continue to struggle.

“On an apples-to-apples basis, we have twice as much per-capita retail space as any other place in the world,” Kniffen said. “So, yes, we are the most over-stored place in the world.”

The U.S. has an estimated 48 square feet of retail space per citizen—a footprint that’s set to decline “pretty fast,” Kniffen said.

Read More: America’s Malls Are Losing Their Anchor Stores

Macy’s isn’t the only retailer struggling to stay afloat. In April, department store J.C. Penney cut payroll, froze overtime for its employees and took other cost-cutting measures, while teen-apparel chain Aéropostale filed for bankruptcy last week. Fellow mall giant Sears has closed more than 200 locations over the past two years, while Penney shuttered 40 stores in January 2015.

In their place have risen discount stores like T.J. Maxx and Marshalls, which are taking up some of the real estate abandoned by mall anchors like Macy’s and Sears.

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The purpose of this disclosure is to explain how we make money without charging you for our content.

Our mission is to help people at any stage of life make smart financial decisions through research, reporting, reviews, recommendations, and tools.

Earning your trust is essential to our success, and we believe transparency is critical to creating that trust. To that end, you should know that many or all of the companies featured here are partners who advertise with us.

Our content is free because our partners pay us a referral fee if you click on links or call any of the phone numbers on our site. If you choose to interact with the content on our site, we will likely receive compensation. If you don't, we will not be compensated. Ultimately the choice is yours.

Opinions are our own and our editors and staff writers are instructed to maintain editorial integrity, but compensation along with in-depth research will determine where, how, and in what order they appear on the page.

To find out more about our editorial process and how we make money, click here.

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