Forever 21 fashion chain files for Chapter 11 bankruptcy

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SAN FRANCISCO – DECEMBER 27: Shoppers walk in downtown San Francisco as they take advantage of the post-Christmas sales December 27, 2007 in San Francisco, California. The consumer confidence index grew in the month of December despite underlying concerns about the economy. (Photo by David Paul Morris/Getty Images)

NEW YORK (AP) — Low-price fashion chain Forever 21, a one-time hot destination for teen shoppers that fell victim to its own rapid expansion and changing consumer tastes, has filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection.

The privately held company based in Los Angeles says it will close up to 178 stores. The company once had more than 800 stores in 57 countries.

Forever 21 joins Barneys New York and Diesel USA in a growing list of retailers seeking bankruptcy protection as they battle online competitors.

Forever 21 was founded in 1984 and, along with other so-called fast fashion chains like H&M and Zara, rode a wave of popularity among young customers that took off in the mid-1990s. But over the last year or so, fast fashion has fallen out of style.

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