Pinched by shutdown orders, Hobby Lobby closes stores

OKLAHOMA CITY (AP) – Hobby Lobby says the ongoing threat of the coronavirus has forced it to close its stores until further notice.

The Oklahoma City-based arts and crafts chain says it is furloughing all of its store employees and many of its corporate and distribution workers.

Many state and local governments have issued orders to close all nonessential businesses to curb the spread of COVID-19, the illness caused by the novel coronavirus.

Hobby Lobby officials initially resisted efforts to close their stores, saying the sale of fabric was essential.

Citations issued in Colorado and Texas pushed retail chain to changes its stance.

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