News | World News | The High Street enduring torrid year as store sales decline for eight months in a row

The High Street enduring torrid year as store sales decline for eight months in a row

Popular Articles

The High Street is enduring a torrid year as store sales decline for eight months in a row - and footfall drops at 'increasing pace'

  • Sales fell 2.7% year-on-year in September - eighth consecutive month of declines
  • Homewares sales dropped 4.4%, lifestyle and fashion sales down 2.1% and 2.8%
  • Online sales were their weakest since the BDO started tracking them in 2010 
  • Results come hot on heels of the collapse of fashion chain Coast

By Alex Wright For Thisismoney.co.uk

Published: 08:02 EDT, 12 October 2018 | Updated: 08:26 EDT, 12 October 2018

6

View
comments

The High Street is suffering a torrid year with in-store sales declining for eight consecutive months, according to new retail figures.

Sales in shops were 2.7 per cent lower in September than the same month last year,  advisory firm BDO's High Street Sales Tracker revealed, marking a full year since sales growth has exceeded one per cent.

The figures come hot on the heels of the collapse of fashion chain Coast, which hit the buffers on Thursday. 

Some of the firm's assets have since been picked up in a pre-pack deal by sister firm Karen Millen, but 24 Coast stores have been closed and 300 jobs are at risk. 

Tough times: The UK high street is suffering its worst year on record after in-store sales declined for the eighth month in a row
Tough times: The UK high street is suffering its worst year on record after in-store sales declined for the eighth month in a row

Tough times: The UK high street is suffering its worst year on record after in-store sales declined for the eighth month in a row

In contrast, online sales grew 11.6 per cent year-on-year last month. 

However this was the worst 'non-store' performance in September since BDO started tracking online sales eight years ago.

Last month's sales of homewares dropped 4.4 per cent, while lifestyle and fashion sales were down 2.1 per cent and 2.8 per cent respectively.

Sophie Michael, head of retail and wholesale at BDO, said: '2018 has been an incredibly challenging year for retailers and there are no signs of this abating.

'The ongoing decline in homeware sales and big ticket items reflects the nervousness of the UK consumer, especially as uncertainty around Brexit lingers.

'Footfall on the high street has been dropping at an increasing pace, which will be of serious concern as retailers enter the crucial Christmas season.

'Somehow that decline in footfall needs to be reversed.'

Yesterday Patisserie Valerie warned that it could fold without a significant cash injection
Yesterday Patisserie Valerie warned that it could fold without a significant cash injection

Yesterday Patisserie Valerie warned that it could fold without a significant cash injection

She added: 'With Brexit looming, the Chancellor will want to keep his powder dry and build up his war chest to cover the associated costs of our exit.

'But retail is a hugely important part of the UK economy and that cannot be ignored. Mr Hammond needs to step up and take action to support our flailing high street.'   

This year has seen the collapse of several major retailers including Toys R Us, Poundworld and Maplin, leading to the loss of tens of thousands of jobs in the industry.

High Street peer Patisserie Valerie - with 200 shops - is teetering on the brink of collapse after exposing a black hole in its accounts. Finance director Chris Marsh was arrested on suspicion of fraud on Thursday night.

Advertisement

Most watched Money videos

MOST READ MONEY

View All

MOST WATCHED NEWS VIDEOS

By Shawn Arnette 12/10/2018 08:26:00