Brighter news for Scottish retail

After a tough summer, sales are up

THE nights might be getting darker, but the retail picture across Scotland is looking a little brighter as we head into the crucial Christmas trading period.

According to figures from the Scottish Retail Consortium (SRC) and KPMG, total sales in Scotland increased by 1% for the four weeks to 26 October, compared to the year before.

Total food sales increased by 2.5% versus October 2018, a figure that was above the 3-month and 12-month averages of 2.4%.

Paul Martin, UK head of retail at PMG said:  “After a particularly challenging and prolonged period of uncertainty, the latest figures provide some reassurance and confidence.

“A positive turnaround in the figures will provide a welcome relief for the industry as a whole, and offers an injection of cautious optimism.”

David Lonsdale, director at the SRC, said: “Overall these figures strike a more optimistic note at the start of the crucial ‘golden quarter’ trading period that leads up to Christmas. However, a big question remains over the future direction of consumer spending.

“The coming weeks and months will be dominated by the general election, Brexit and UK and Scottish budgets. Retailers will be hoping policy-makers keep consumer confidence and household disposable incomes uppermost in their minds.”