Fashion not food grows ahead of festivities

David Martin, head of policy, Scottish Retail  Consortium.
David Martin, head of policy, Scottish Retail Consortium.

THERE was every sign that it was going to be a late Christmas for Scotland’s food retailers when the final Scottish Retail Consortium/KPMG Scottish Retail Sales Monitor of 2013 was released.

While overall sales in Scotland’s shops in November were up on the year before, the analysts reckoned it was clothing and footwear retailers who had shown most improvement on 2012.
Total food sales were up 2.3% year on year. But in 2012 they had been up 2.6% on the preceding period, so the rate of growth had declined.
Total non-food sales were up 1.1% but that was a very much better performance than the same time in 2012 when they had slumped by 4.7%. The report said clothing and footwear had shown their best performance since July.
Like-for-like food sales, which strips out the figures from stores which launched or closed down during the year, were down by just under 1%.
David Martin, head of policy at SRC said: “Food had a slight slowdown compared against October, reflecting lower inflation rates and a general trend that many shoppers were focusing on making savings and buying on promotion as far as possible.
“Overall, this is an acceptable but unexceptional result, broadly in line with annual and quarterly averages for growth.”