BRC – KPMG: UK retail sales up by 5.6% in April vs April 2016

London, 2017-May-10 — /EPR Retail News/ —

BRC – KPMG RETAIL SALES MONITOR APRIL 2017

Covering the four weeks 2 – 29 April 2017

  • In April, UK retail sales increased by 5.6% on a like-for-like basis from April 2016, when they had decreased 0.9% from the preceding year.
  • On a total basis, sales rose 6.3% in April, against flat growth in April 2016. The performance is positively distorted by the timing of Easter and the highest since April 2011, another Easter distortion. This pulls the 3-month average to 2.0%, above the 12-month average of 1.3%.
  • Over the three-months to April, Food sales increased 2.4% on a like-for-like basis and 3.6% on a total basis. This is much faster than the 12-month Total average growth of 2.0%, the highest since February 2014.
  • Over the three-months to April, Non-Food retail sales in the UK increased 0.3% on a like-for-like basis and 0.7% on a total basis, almost in line with the 12-month Total average growth to 0.8%.
  • Over the three-months to April, Online sales of Non-Food products grew 8.2% while In-store sales declined 1.3% on a Total basis and 1.8% on a like-for-like basis, roughly in line with the 12-month average decline of 1.7%.

Helen Dickinson OBE, Chief Executive, British Retail Consortium

“As expected, the Easter holidays provided the welcome boost to retail sales, which goes some way to making up for the disappointing start to the year. That said, the positive distortion from the timing of Easter was largely responsible for the month’s growth and looking to the longer-term signs of a slowdown, the outlook isn’t as rosy.

“Taking a closer look at the sales figures, consumer spend on food and non-food items is diverging. Food categories continue to contribute the most weight to overall growth, although food inflation has a part to play in this. Meanwhile, consumers are being more cautious in their spending towards non-food products and focussing more on value priced lines.

“Shop prices are still down overall although other items of consumer spending are increasing headline inflation and hence driving a tightening of purse strings. Although today’s figures do indicate that consumers are still willing to spend, with a cocktail of rising costs and slowing wage growth as the backdrop, conditions for consumers will get tougher. The next Government needs to deliver a plan that puts consumers first in its economic policies and the forthcoming Brexit negotiations.”

Paul Martin, UK Head of Retail, KPMG

“April’s sales provided a brief period of respite for retailers following a relentless start to the year. However, much of the rise was driven by the timing of Easter and the growing inflationary pressures the sector is facing, rather than a sudden upswing in consumer confidence.

“Food and drink sales soared significantly in April, suggesting that feasts remain at the heart of festive holidays. That said, in the ultra-competitive grocery sector, these growth figures should be taken with a hefty pinch of salt, with margins under significant pressure and profitability remaining a concern.

“The growth in sales of children’s clothes and toys points to parents making the most of school holidays and keeping the kids entertained. Meanwhile, the rise in furniture sales suggests that springtime home improvements have been kicked into gear.

“Looking ahead, retailers need to ensure that this month’s boost doesn’t lull them into a false sense of security. The retail landscape is changing fast and as such, agility and the ability to manage costs will remain critical.”

Joanne Denney-Finch, Chief Executive, IGD

“April’s food and grocery sales are best viewed in combination with March to iron out the changing date of Easter. Sales across this two-month period were up by around 4 per cent on last year, exceptional growth by all recent standards. Partly, this is due to the return of some food inflation but the underlying demand for groceries was also very robust.

“The public remains in a state of uncertainty though and we cannot be sure how long the good run will last. The number of shoppers expecting to be better off in the year ahead has dipped to 21 per cent from 24 per cent last month.”

Contact:
BRC Press Office
TELEPHONE: + 44 (0) 20 7854 8924
EMAIL: media@brc.org.uk
OUT OF HOURS: +44 (0) 7557 747 269

Source: BRC

British Retail Consortium: Q4 2014 online retail figures clearly demonstrate the appetite of consumers across the globe for UK retail

LONDON, 2015-2-2 — /EPR Retail News/ — Helen Dickinson, Director General, British Retail Consortium, said: “Today’s figures clearly demonstrate the appetite of consumers across the globe for UK retail. This presents an enormous market opportunity for retailers regardless of their size.

“One of the key trends retailers will be paying close attention to is, in the emerging markets, the first digital point of contact for a huge number of consumers is a smartphone or tablet device. This is because in many of those markets mobile infrastructure is far superior to the fixed line broadband networks in more established economies like the UK. This means that if Britain’s retailers want to take advantage of the interest being abroad they’ll need to continue their investment in device-optimised platforms; ensuring that no matter how a customer first comes into contact with them they can offer the world beating service that is the hallmark of British retailing.

“It is absolutely clear from today’s statistics that there is an international market for UK retailers and there is strong international demand for their products. In order to take best advantage of this it is incumbent on governments and international regulators to ensure that they help, not hinder, UK retailers reach keen consumers around the globe.”

Peter Fitzgerald, Retail Director, Google, said: “The growth of mobile and connected devices continued to power our clients’ Export efforts in 2014, with many of the largest emerging and established markets seeing astounding smartphone growth. Understanding the role of mobile in the purchase process is vital if retailers are to unlock its full value.

“In the UK you can’t talk about Q4 without mentioning Black Friday, which saw phenomenal uptake with four times as many searches for Black Friday deals in 2014 than in the previous year. Given these impressive figures, we expect to see interest in Black Friday continue to grow in 2015.

“British leisure brands really blazed a trail this Christmas, with an impressive 285% increase in searches compared to the same period in 2013. Beauty and personal care also saw a real surge of interest, with fragrances, candles, and skincare products all seeing impressive year on year search growth.”

British Retail Consortium, 21 Dartmouth Street, Westminster, London, SW1H 9BP.
020 7854 8900. info@brc.org.uk.