Apple temporarily closes some of its US retail stores again after cases of Covid-19 spike

News hits US shares as investors worry about reopening economy

Before Friday’s decision, Apple had reopened the majority of its US locations, including many stores in major markets such as New York City and Los Angeles. Photograph: The New York Times

Before Friday’s decision, Apple had reopened the majority of its US locations, including many stores in major markets such as New York City and Los Angeles. Photograph: The New York Times

 

Apple is temporarily shutting some of its US retail stores again after cases of Covid-19 spiked in some areas across the country.

The closures will affect 11 stores across Florida, Arizona, North Carolina and South Carolina.

Apple shares slipped 1.4 per cent on the news, with US stocks in general moving lower as investors worried about the safety aspects of reopening the economy.

“Due to current Covid-19 conditions in some of the communities we serve, we are temporarily closing stores in these areas,” an Apple spokesman said in a statement. “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.”

Before Friday’s decision, Apple had reopened the majority of its US locations, including many stores in major markets such as New York City and Los Angeles.

Pandemic accelerating

The global coronavirus pandemic is accelerating, with a record 150,000 cases reported Thursday, said World Health Organisation chief Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus. Cases have recently spiked in some US states, including Florida, North Carolina, Oklahoma, California, Texas and Arizona, prompting local governments to consider new measures.

Apple originally closed all its stores outside of China in March to help curb the spread of Covid-19. Its reopened stores were split into categories of either in-store shopping, curbside service, or shopping by appointment only. Apple has also required customers to follow a health checklist, conduct social distancing, and wear masks while in the store. – Bloomberg