Posted 11th Aug 2017

Non-food sales down as consumer sentiment falls

By KBBDaily on 11th August 2017 - 15:24pm

Non-food retail sales in the UK declined by 0.7% on a like-for-like basis in the three months to July 2017, according to the latest British Retail Consortium – BRC – KPMG Retail Sales Monitor, with overall sales in July rising by 0.9% due to increasing food sales alone.

However, online sales of non-food products grew by 8.3% in July, the BRC said, and by 7.8% over the three months to July, while in-store sales declined by 3% on a like-for-like basis last month. BRC CEO Helen Dickinson noted that “non-food sales relapsed into negative territory as the competition heats up over a shrinking pool of discretionary consumer spending power”.

“Despite the gloomy picture for non-food overall, there were some success stories,” she added. “The homeware category for instance, which lost out in the previous month to summer wardrobe purchases, moved to the top of the performance rankings.”

According to KPMG UK retail head Paul Martin, “the rainy month turned attention indoors, with furniture and home accessory sales benefiting”.

“Interestingly, July retail sales diverge from the latest consumer confidence figures, which noted a downturn in consumer sentiment,” he added. “This divide suggests that UK shopping patterns remain mixed, although with demand continuing to be weak, retailers would be wise to remain cautious.”

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