fast

crisis puts the brakes on fast fashion

Zara, H&M and Gap may be slowly reopening their stores but the coronavirus epidemic has had a devastating financial impact on the fast fashion sector, which needs a radical overhaul if it is to recover, experts say.

Nearly 40 percent of businesses in the sector are expecting the impact to be “much worse” than that of the 2008 financial crisis, a Euromonitor International survey showed.

It expects sales of clothing and shoes to fall by at least 12 percent this year.

Global leader Inditex, the Spanish group which owns the Zara fashion chain, posted a first-quarter loss of 409 million euros on Wednesday, its first-ever loss since it went public in 2001.

With 88 percent of its stores closed at the height of the global lockdown, the group saw its sales practically halved.

But the group, which has solid financials and whose shares have held up well, has continued to

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