Early Easter exhibits ‘inexperienced shoots’ as gross sales rise

Overlaying the 5 weeks from 25 February to 30 March 2024, UK whole retail gross sales elevated by 3.5% yr on yr in March, stories the most recent BRC-KPMG retail gross sales monitor. That is in opposition to progress of 5.1% in March final yr.

Non-food gross sales nevertheless fell by 1.9% yr on yr, in opposition to progress of 1.8% in 2023.

In-store non-food gross sales decreased by 1.1% yr on yr, in contrast with progress of 5.2% in March final yr.

Equally, on-line non-food gross sales dipped by 1.4% yr on yr, in opposition to a fall of two.1% final yr.

Helen Dickinson, chief govt of the British Retail Consortium, mentioned: “After a tough begin to the yr, retailers are hopeful that with hotter climate across the nook, client confidence will spring again up. A powerful retail trade can increase funding throughout our cities and cities, and as we gear up for a normal election, it’s important the subsequent authorities recognises this and rethinks the burdensome prices imposed on retailers.

“With a pro-growth coverage panorama, retailers can step up their funding in innovation and in native jobs and communities up and down the nation.”

Linda Ellett, UK head of client markets, leisure and retail at KPMG, added: “An early Easter confirmed inexperienced shoots of spring for retailers in March, with gross sales progress up a extra optimistic 3.5% on final yr, and above headline inflation for the primary time in additional than two years. On-line gross sales, nevertheless, continued to slip, falling by 1.4% regardless of sturdy performances in house equipment, well being, magnificence and homewares.

“Financial indicators are on track with inflationary pressures easing and rates of interest having doubtlessly peaked, nevertheless client confidence stays fragile. It stays a difficult atmosphere, however as we head into the hotter months, retailers shall be hoping that stronger client confidence will flip into stronger retail gross sales, particularly in additional discretionary classes similar to clothes, following an extremely tough few years.”

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