Worst summer in 6 years for UK high street

High street retailers in the UK have suffered the worst summer for 6 years, according to the latest figures from the BDO.

For the first time since 2009, May, June and July registered consecutive negative results in like-for-like sales.

Throwing caution to the wind

With the political dust still settling from the general election, consumers remain cautious when it comes to spending their cash. As interest rates become increasingly uncertain, and with growing rumbles of an impending rise, the high street has felt the effects of a prudent population.

Lower levels of footfall on our high street has resulted in an overall decline in like-for-like sales to -1.1%, while BDO data suggests that the restaurant and bar sector is continuing to win the race for the nation’s spare change.

Fashion drops out of season

Fashion retailers, meanwhile, had a particularly discouraging month. With consumer confidence around the Eurozone at a six-month low, some fashion stores launched earlier than usual summer sales.

As like-for-like sales declined by -1.4% compared to July 2014, potential customers headed for sunnier climes, and traders headed for another difficult month.

Online falls into line

Interestingly, the fashion sector took another hit – this time online - with specialist fashion retailers generally found to have had the poorest month when it came to non-store sales.

Online sales overall continue to mature - but despite a +14.6% rise in like-for-like sales initially appearing positive, the growth is actually the lowest for the channel since BDO started tracking.

Has your shop faced the high-street blues? Or does your success story defy the data? Let us know in the comments below!

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