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UK retail sales in December likely to be £44.6 bn: report
13
Oct '17
United Kingdom retail sales in December are forecast to reach £44.6 billion, according to a recent report. Against a backdrop of rising inflation and weakening consumer confidence, it has been estimated that retail sales is likely to see growth of less than 2 per cent. With Brexit, Christmas 2017 is hopeful to be more expensive compared to previous years.

The financial concern of UK shoppers has grown over the past year, according to the report by Mintel, one of the world's leading market intelligence agencies. Mintel's Consumer Confidence tracker highlighted that in October 2016, 34 per cent shoppers said they felt financially confident. This fell to 31 per cent who said the same in September 2017. Additionally, while in September 2017 28 per cent of consumers said they were worse-off than they were a year ago, this up from 20 per cent who said the same in October 2016.

"The natural response to falling real incomes would be to cut back on spending. Added to the tough comparison against last year’s boom, retail sales would be expected to be lower this Christmas. But, we don’t feel that we can justify such a negative forecast. Retail sales are holding up exceptionally well, even if they are largely financed by increased borrowing. It seems too close to Christmas for there to be a significant fall in spending this year. We also believe that people may well feel that next year will be tough, so they will have a good time now before reality strikes," Richard Perks, director of retail esearch at Mintel, said.

"It is likely that 2016 marked the peak for Black Friday shopping. Black Friday has been a major distorting factor in Christmas demand over the last few years and there are some signs of disillusionment creeping in. Discounting in the run up to Christmas is usually a sign of distress and those who do take part will be retailers who are having trouble selling at full price," Richard concluded. (RR)

Fibre2Fashion News Desk – India


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