Take a look at the bigger picture with the canadian economy. We never really had the same sort of crash as the americans in 2008. The middle and upper classes were insulated by artificially low interest rates and the encouragement to start flipping more and more property. Harper and his cronies dropped interest rates so low, and screwed with the housing market so much that the entire economy is now built on debt, subprime mortgages and oil.Oil is down for the count, people simply cannot take out more mortgages, and debt is at an all time high.
It is not a surprise to me that people have run out of debt now (despite a thoroughly panicked boc dropping interest rates AGAIN on the 15th of april or so I hear...). The dollar is tanking too if you haven't noticed, which really sucks for buying things from america. The american economy recovered, our depression was glossed over and hidden by the conservatives over the last 7 years with the stupid policy of low interest rates. Now they are desperately trying to bribe people before the election and are praying that the shit does not hit the fan before that.
The conservative government is all smoke and mirrors while they are here, and when they get kicked out, it will be someone elses mess to fix.
Futureshop and bestbuy are the same store and have been since 2001. The greatest trick they pulled in this country was convincing canadians that they had the ability to comparison shop for electronics by visiting just those two stores. They had a good racket going, but now the internet has come so far as to be the real competition. So yes the company is doing the right thing by consolidating brands, but harper has also messed up the economy so much, that people simply don't have any more money to spend. The retail sector feels that first, so they are the ones having to reorganize to stay afloat.
The canadian landscape is littered with large department store chains that have folded. I am old enough to remember shopping at towers, which was sold to zellers at exactly the same time as the last major housing correction. Funny how consumer spending and housing affordability is inter-related isn't it?