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J.C. Penney to cut 2,000 jobs, close 33 stores nationally

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J.C. Penney announced Wednesday they would be closing the doors to 33 stores across the country.

The retailer, which has about 1,100 stores, said it wants to focus its resources on the highest growth opportunities and that the closure of the 33 stores is due to "underperformance."

As a result, 2,000 people will lose their jobs.

"As we continue to progress toward long-term profitable growth, it is necessary to reexamine the financial performance of our store portfolio and adjust our national footprint accordingly," said Myron E. (Mike) Ullman, III, chief executive officer of JCPenney.  

"While it's always difficult to make a business decision that impacts our valued customers and associates, this important step addresses a strategic priority to improve the profitability of our stores and position JCPenney for future success."

The moves will result in annual cost savings of about $65 million, beginning this year. Penney expects to incur pre-tax charges of about $26 million in the fiscal fourth quarter of 2013 and about $17 million in future periods.

The only reported J.C. Penney in Ohio to close is in Wooster.

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