JC Penney to phase out check-out counter

Struggling retailer JC Penney has an idea to boost business: get rid of check-out counters.{}CEO Ron Johnson says the department store chain is replacing all its technology infrastructure with a new system that won't require clerks. {}Instead, shoppers will be able to use self-checkout machines, similar to those found in many grocery stores.{}

It's part of an effort to return the company to profitability.{}JC Penney is also planning to replace traditional bar codes on price tags with high-tech radio frequency identification, or "RFID," chips to make purchases faster.{}

Johnson told "Fortune" he hopes to phase out checkout counters by 2014.{}