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Weather & clearances distort June sales pattern

10
Jul '07
UK retail sales rose 3.0% on a like-for-like basis, compared with June 2006, when sales were up 2.3%. Despite June's improvement, growth in the second quarter of 2007 averaged only 2.5% compared with 3.5% in the first quarter.

The three-month trend rate of growth fell to 2.5% from 2.8% in May, for like-for-like sales, and to 4.6% from 5.0% for total sales, reflecting the continuing growth of retail space.

Sales patterns were distorted by exceptional weather both this June and last June, the World Cup last June and some clearance sales starting earlier this year.

Torrential rain hit clothing and footwear, DIY and gardening, but did drive footfall in department stores. Food sales slowed against last year's World Cup and gains in homewares and furniture were largely discount-driven.

Consumer confidence has been hit by interest rate rises. Consumers are more cautious about making major purchases, but are taking advantage of heavy discounts to buy now in anticipation of a further rate rise.

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British Retail Consortium


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