According to the Associated Press:

Starbucks Corp. announced Tuesday it will close 600 company-operated stores in the next year as the faltering U.S. economy hastened the pain caused by the company’s own rapid expansion.

About 12,000 workers, or 7 percent of Starbucks’ global work force, will be affected by the closings, which are expected to take place between late July and the middle of 2009, spokeswoman Valerie O’Neil said.

The company had previously planned to shut 100 stores. The 500 more that will be closed had been on an internal watch list for some time. They were not profitable, not expected to be profitable in the foreseeable future, and the “vast majority” had been opened near an existing company-operated Starbucks.

Do you think these closures will increase the wait time at the nearby stores and cause people to walk away?

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