23 May 2024, 07:43
By Furniture News Aug 10, 2021

Retail sales strong but slowing, says BRC-KPMG

Total retail sales increased by +6.4% in July, against a growth of +3.2% in July 2020 – below the three-month average growth of +14.7% and the 12-month average growth of +10.4% – reports BRC-KPMG in its latest Retail Sales Monitor.

UK retail sales increased +4.7% on a LFL YoY.

Non-food retail sales increased +24.6% (+17.6% LFL). Online non-food sales increased by +0.6% in July. The non-food online penetration rate decreased to 48.4% in July from 54% in July 2020. While down on last year, it was up on the 29.7% seen at the same point in 2019.

BRC chief executive Helen Dickinson OBE says: “July continued to see strong sales, although growth has started to slow. The lifting of restrictions did not bring the anticipated in-store boost, with the wet weather leaving consumers reluctant to visit shopping destinations.

"Online sales remained strong, and with weddings and other social events back on for the summer calendar, formalwear and beauty all began to see notable improvement, so fashion outlets in particular saw a bounce back to pre-pandemic levels. As many people prepare to return to the workplace, purchase of home office equipment began to fall after months of high sales, meanwhile other homeware, such as furniture and household appliances, continued to do well.

Paul Martin, UK head of retail, KPMG, adds: “Retail sales continued to grow in July, although at a slower rate as the reopening of the hospitality and leisure sectors led to a dilution in consumer spending. 

“Whilst the high street saw continued growth in July, with sales up +6%, unsurprisingly online sales fell back - although less than expected - by -0.4% compared to July 2020. Both women’s and men’s clothing continued their revival with strong growth in-store and online. Many other non-food categories had a less-strong performance, especially those related with the home, after the house-moving frenzy of recent months started to abate.

“Over the coming months the health of the sector is expected to grow at a much slower rate as retailers face increasing challenges on a number of fronts. Staffing pressures, increases in commodity and component costs, rising inflation eating into households’ spending power and stalling consumer confidence could lead to a slowdown in retail sector growth as we head into autumn.”

© 2013 - 2024 Gearing Media Group Ltd. All Rights Reserved.