BDO: Fashion sector boost for retail

Sales grow for second week in category, but homeware sales remain negative.
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Sales figures from BDO's High Street Sales Tracker for the week ending November 15th showed the overall total rising by 2.4 per cent, with fashion the strongest performing sector (up 4.4 per cent) for a second consecutive week.

The unsettled weather helped sales of winter coats and boots, while formalwear also sold well on the back of targeted promotions.

Non fashion retailers, meanwhile, had a mixed week with takings only just ahead of last year. Demand was fairly subdued in most categories, with only a handful of stores reporting a significant uplift. There were some positive gains across leisure and luxury.

Sales remained negative in homewares, with the sector down 5.3 per cent. Although some stores witnessed a modest uplift, with furniture the strongest performer, gains were offset by poor sales in most other areas.

Non store sales continued to improve after the end of the postal strikes, up 41.1 per cent.

"I expect this upward trend to continue in the next few weeks as we head towards Christmas and that the approach to sales in the lead up to be much more measured than we saw last year," said Don Williams, head of retail at BDO.

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