The COVID-19 coronavirus outbreak has sent global markets into bear territory and economies into recession. And as the pandemic stretches on, it's inducing a growing number of bankruptcy filings.
Though, in most cases, COVID-19 has simply acted as the straw that broke the camel's back.
Consider the retail industry, which has endured a particularly difficult past two months. Most "non-essential" retailers are feeling the pain, However, those that were already overloaded with debt, as well as suffering from long-term declines amid changing tastes and Americans' swelling adoption of online shopping, have been pushed over the edge.
But it's not just retail. COVID-19 is forcing companies across several industries to seek out Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection and other types of relief. Consider the energy sector, where the oil declines of 2014-16 weakened a number of exploration and production companies, only to have coronavirus-sparked demand slumps finish off the job. Financially wobbly companies in the restaurant and entertainment industries are starting to collapse, too.
Just remember: Bankruptcy filings aren't always "the end." In many cases, Chapter 11 reorganizations and other maneuvers help companies shed significant amounts of debt, allowing them to continue operating as they try to find a new way forward. That said, COVID-19 is threatening to knock a few well-known brand names out of existence entirely.
Here are 14 companies whose recent bankruptcy filings can be chalked up to the COVID-19 outbreak. In most cases, these businesses were already showing signs of financial duress - the coronavirus merely delivered the coup de grâce.SEE ALSO: 21 Stocks Warren Buffett Is Selling (And 1 He Bought)