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Lowe's To Close 51 North American Stores; Including Gurnee, Granite City, Portage Locations

Struggling to keep up with rival Home Depot, home improvement chain Lowe's will close more than 50 stores in North America by February, including two in Illinois and one in Indiana.

Lowe's announced Monday it would close 20 under-performing U.S. stores, and 31 more in Canada.

The U.S. stores slate for closure include locations in Gurnee and Granite City in Illinois; and in Portage, Indiana.

Most of the stores slated to close are located within 10 miles of another Lowe's, and the company said employees at closing stores would have the chance to transfer to similar jobs at nearby locations.

"While decisions that impact our associates are never easy, the store closures are a necessary step in our strategic reassessment as we focus on building a stronger business," said Marvin R. Ellison, Lowe's president and CEO. "We believe our people are the foundation of our business and essential to our future growth, and we are making every effort to transition impacted associates to nearby Lowe's stores."

Lowe's said the 51 stores will close before Feb. 1.

The company has been laboring to keep up with Home Depot. Earlier this year, Lowe's reduced inventory at its stores, and closed all of its Orchard Supply Hardware stores, a California-based subsidiary.

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