Please ensure Javascript is enabled for purposes of website accessibility

AT& Keeping Most of Its Retail Stores Open

By Daniel B. Kline - Mar 18, 2020 at 4:21PM

You’re reading a free article with opinions that may differ from The Motley Fool’s Premium Investing Services. Become a Motley Fool member today to get instant access to our top analyst recommendations, in-depth research, investing resources, and more. Learn More

The company sits in a difficult position.

On a regular day, for most people, cellphones remain a luxury. Sure, we use them to communicate and for a lot of other useful things, but we don't need them to interact with the outside world.

That's not the case currently, and it's why AT&T (T 1.67%) has decided to close on 40% of company-owned stores due to coronavirus. The company will also reduce hours at stores remaining open, close all locations on Sunday, and reduce hours at the operating stores.

A person holds a smartphone.

For some, a smartphone has become an essential lifeline during the coronavirus pandemic. Image source: Getty Images.

Why is AT&T staying open?

AT&T's move comes after T-Mobile(TMUS 1.69%) decided to close 80% of its company-owned stores but keep locations open to serve customers both gave similar reasons.

"Connectivity is always essential to our customers -- doctors and nurses, first responders, governments, banks, grocery stores, pharmacies, and others delivering vital services," AT&T posted on its website. "It's even more critical during a public health crisis that's challenging everyone. In fact, as a critical infrastructure provider, AT&T views it as our civic duty to step up and keep our customers and communities connected."

AT&T needs to do this

Much like T-Mobile AT&T has pledged to increase cleaning and sanitizing in its stores. It also plans to practice social distancing to minimize the risk of infection.

In these trying times, people need access to their phones. Many Americans lack landlines and without working mobile phone service they would be cut off. People should only visit an AT&T store if it's essential -- now is not the time for a voluntary upgrade -- but if you need a working phone, the company is staying open to meet your needs.

Invest Smarter with The Motley Fool

Join Over 1 Million Premium Members Receiving…

  • New Stock Picks Each Month
  • Detailed Analysis of Companies
  • Model Portfolios
  • Live Streaming During Market Hours
  • And Much More
Get Started Now

Stocks Mentioned

AT&T Inc. Stock Quote
AT&T Inc.
$21.31 (1.67%) $0.35
T-Mobile US, Inc. Stock Quote
T-Mobile US, Inc.
$136.81 (1.69%) $2.27

*Average returns of all recommendations since inception. Cost basis and return based on previous market day close.

Related Articles

Motley Fool Returns

Motley Fool Stock Advisor

Market-beating stocks from our award-winning analyst team.

Stock Advisor Returns
S&P 500 Returns

Calculated by average return of all stock recommendations since inception of the Stock Advisor service in February of 2002. Returns as of 07/01/2022.

Discounted offers are only available to new members. Stock Advisor list price is $199 per year.

Premium Investing Services

Invest better with The Motley Fool. Get stock recommendations, portfolio guidance, and more from The Motley Fool's premium services.