The sale of coats and other seasonal wear have been badly hit by an unusually warm autumn in the United Kingdom, as people kept away from such purchases and as such, for the first time decades, the high street sales for UK retailers saw their worst October.
According to the BDO’s High Street Sales Tracker, noting the largest year-on-year decline, there was a fall in the overall like-for-like sales in high street of 5.2 percent in October this year. This is also the largest drop in more than a decade.
Noting the worst sale record for the month of October that has ever been recorded by the BDO tracker, there was a drop of 7.9 percent in terms of year-on-year sale in fashion due to the inclement weather, BDO said.
During the period of China’s “Golden Week” holiday season, advantage of the weak pound in the U.K. was taken by Chinese visitors to the U.K. in the third week of the month and boosted sale, but despite this boost in sale, there was slip of 0.1 percent in the sales of lifestyle goods.
While reaching a peak with a year-on-year rise of 33/9 percent during the third week of the month of October, there was an overall growth of 22 percent in the non-store sales, mostly online, which clearly indicates the impact of the structural changes that have bene taking place in the retail market.
Compared to a strong base of 5.39% growth for the latest week in November last year, the total LFL rise in the sales grew by 0.38% in the same week and this marked a change in the weather and as such November seems to has started somewhat in a better way for the sale of high street.
Noting a rise in the total footfall in the last seventeen weeks, and compared to last year there was an increase of overall footfall in that week of November and the week included Halloween and the lead up to Bonfire Night.
“The continuing pressures on disposable income combined with a drop in consumer confidence have hit sales hard this month. The sharp decline in October sales will no doubt bring anxiety to UK retail in this critical trading period,” said Sophie Michael, BDO’s head of retail and wholesale, on October’s slump.
“With margins already tight and Black Friday looming, retailers will be working even harder at promotional activity and product differentiation to convince the reluctant shopper to spend with them. We may see a real polarisation of winners and losers on the high street in 2018 or in the near future.”
(Adapted from Digitallook.com)