UK: Promotions drive December sales growth
Earlier and deeper promotions meant that UK retailers enjoyed a "better than hoped for Christmas" according to figures released today (10 December) the British Retail Consortium (BRC).
The BRC-KPMG Sales Monitor for December showed that UK retail sales values were 2.2% higher on a like-for-like basis compared to the previous year, when they fell 0.3% after being hit by snow and bad weather. Over the month, sales were up 4.1%.
The study found that clothing and footwear showed "good gains" on last December's weak sales. Non-food non-store sales, which include internet, mail-order and phone, saw sales growth pick up sharply, with sales up 18.5% on a year ago.
While the numbers reported growth, BRC director general Stephen Robertson was quick to highlight the "major one-off factors" that boosted the numbers and emphasised that "we're not witnessing any fundamental change in customers' circumstances".
"The comparison is with severe snow disruption a year ago. Discounting was deeper and started earlier and the vital Saturday Christmas Eve added another big trading day to the final run-up.
"Post-Christmas offers brought large numbers of shoppers out but that was generally a short-lived hunt for bargains. With discounting driving sales at the expense of margins the key question for retailers is about earnings from those sales," said Robertson.
Commenting on the report, Shore Capital analyst Clive Black said he was "struck" by the multiple mention of "clothing and footwear demand", although industry watchers will need to keep an eye on margins with "promotional activity also highly prevalent".
- US apparel retailers' November 2016 sales roundup
- Planning is key to an effective inventory strategy
- Steps to piloting living wage in garment factories
- Traditional financing is a misfit for fast fashion
- Why do modern robotics elude sportswear makers?
- Esquel efficiency drive continues to boost brands
- US Q3 in brief – Genesco, G-III Apparel, Express
- Columbia waterproof jacket first made without PFCs
- North Face parka features synthetic spider silk
- EU urged to adopt roadmap for Sri Lanka GSP+ bid
- Outdoor performance apparel 2016: A broader perspective
- Footwear Top 5 Emerging Markets Industry Guide_2016
- Global market review of lingerie – forecasts to 2022
- Global apparel markets: product developments and innovations, October 2016
- REPORT BUNDLE: Africa-Med, Southeast Asia and Central America strategic sourcing pack