J.C. Penney to Close 40 Stores Across US

PLANO, Texas (Scripps News/TNS) -

Despite year-end-shopping-season profits being up, J.C. Penney Co. is closing about 40 stores across the United States this year.

Speaking with CNBC, a company spokesman indicated about 2,250 employees would be affected by the closings.

“We continually evaluate our store portfolio to determine whether there’s a need to close or relocate underperforming stores,” he said in an interview Thursday. J.C. Penney made a similar announcement in January 2014, shuttering 33 stores.

On Wednesday, the Texas-based retailer reported sales growth of 3.7 percent for November and December compared to the same period in 2013.

“I would like to thank our associates for their hard work, warrior spirit and commitment to delivering an exceptional customer experience every day,” said CEO Myron E. Ullman in the celebratory press release sent one day before the store closings were announced.

Stores in 19 states will see locations close. Pennsylvania will be most heavily affected, with five sites set to close.

Thomas said most of the locations will close in April.