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JBT Figures Show Number Of Retail Jewelry Stores Generally Remained Stable In 2021 February 02, 2022 (0 comments)


Warwick, RI—Fourth-quarter and full-year 2021 figures from the Jewelers Board of Trade show the number of U.S. retail jewelry stores continuing a very gradual decline, but not experiencing the kind of drop-offs seen a few years ago.

There were 18,201 retail jewelers in the United States at the end of 2021, compared with 18,512 at the end of 2020. That’s a decline of only 1.7%, or 311 retail jewelry businesses. (Note: JBT figures count the number of businesses, not the number of doors. Multi-store chains are counted as one business.) In the United States, 424 retailers closed but 323 new retail businesses opened. 

In Canada, there were 975 retail jewelry businesses at the end of 2021, compared with 989 at the end of 2020. Two stores opened in the fourth quarter, and four total opened in 2021. 

Again, the predominant reason for closing a store was choice, not circumstance, on both sides of the border. 341 of the 424 U.S. retailers who closed ceased operations, and 92 were the result of a sale or merger. Only two out of the 424 were bankruptcies. In Canada, 10 retailers ceased operations, there was one sale/merger, and zero bankruptcies.

In the United States, the east gained far more new jewelers than anywhere else. Through 2021, 91 new retail businesses opened in the Southeast, followed by 82 in the Northeast. 52 new retail jewelry businesses opened in the Southwest, followed by North Central and South Central with 43 each and, finally, 12 in the Northwest.

In Canada, most of the growth happened in Ontario, where three new jewelry retailers opened, and Quebec and Alberta each gained one new jewelry retailer. 

In terms of closings by region, the order was the same in the United States: 92 retailers closed in the Northeast, 72 in the Southeast, 52 in the Southwest, 49 and 48 in North and South Central, respectively, and 18 in the Northwest. In Canada, Alberta lost four retailers, Ontario lost five, and Quebec lost one.

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