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Sun gives Scottish shops a Spring lift

Princes St shoppingShops enjoyed a better May than April, the second best performance in the last 14 months.

Sunshine boosted Scottish sales’ twelve month averages across the board and provided some long-sought relief for retailers.

Outdoor, health and beauty performed well. Fashion also had a better month as the weather provided the impetus to purchase, and promotional activity helped convert the sales.

David Lonsdale, director, Scottish Retail Consortium said: “These figures are a welcome improvement on April’s rather poor results, however despite one month’s positive data the retail market in Scotland continues to struggle to show sustained growth.

“These figures show the fragile reality of the Scottish retail market. There can be little doubt that Scottish politicians need to look closely both at the retail industry and the wider economy, and carefully consider what policies will best support businesses, encourage consumers, and deliver economic growth.”

David McCorquodale, head of retail, KPMG, said:The grocery sector enjoyed a better performance with greater volumes, even though price deflation still meant that in value terms, total food sales declined.

“Despite the relatively improved performance, total in-store sales in Scotland still declined, providing evidence that the sector, as a whole, still has its challenges.

“In particular, the introduction of the National Living Wage has significantly impacted overheads and although sunnier weather brings short-term gains to retailers, in the long-term, productivity improvements and customer focus, coupled with increased consumer confidence, are still needed for survival.”



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