Demonstrations by “yellow vests” have led to a 35% fall in daily revenues as well as 47% drop in footfalls for French retailers.
On Friday, French retailers stated, protests against rising fuel prices as well as French President Emmanuel Macron’s economic policies, have the potential to weaken if not derail the crucial Christmas shopping season that starts with Black Friday discounts.
On November 17, more than 280,000 demonstrators, known as the “yellow vests”, blocked roads and held protests; they are planning on holding a large demonstration in Paris tomorrow.
According to Jacques Creyssel, the head of the French Retail Federation (FCD), the daily revenue of French retailers fell 35% due to the protests. On Saturday, November 17, store footfall fell by 47% as protesters blocked motorways, sparking major logjams.
“We have a true problem as some stores have been closed for a week now because of the blockades. One week without revenue is dramatic for a company. We are asking for free access for our staff and customers to the stores and the warehouses,” said Creyssel.
He went on to add, “We are at the beginning of the Christmas season, today it’s Black Friday, a crucial time for retailers. If retailers cannot work and customers cannot shop, it’s bound to have a major impact on employment”.