BRC – KPMG Retail Sales Monitor June 2019
Paul Martin, Partner, UK Head of Retail | KPMG
“There are few places retailers can hide from the difficult trading conditions that have been hitting the industry for some time. June’s retail performance did little to ease that, with like-for-like sales falling 1.6 per cent compared to last year.
“On the high street, consumers were eager to pull up a pew for the summer’s sporting events, with added interest in the furniture category. Otherwise, consumers largely turned a blind eye to offers in the physical retail space.
“With 4 per cent online growth, shoppers were thankfully more engaged in this channel, making the most of the added convenience and continued aggressive pricing. Fashion performed particularly well thanks to end-of-season sales and upcoming holidays.
“Pressure on retailers continues to mount and is seemingly coming from all angles: economic, geo-political, environmental and behavioural. Consumer spend is only likely to fall further as things stand, and cost efficiency remains vital. The focus for most in the industry will be preservation and adaptation in order to see them through these tough times.”
Helen Dickinson OBE, Chief Executive | British Retail Consortium
“June sales could not compete with last year’s scorching weather and World Cup, leading to the worst June on record. Sales of TVs, garden furniture and BBQs were all down, with fewer impulse purchases being made. Overall, the picture is bleak: rising real wages have failed to translate into higher spending as ongoing Brexit uncertainty led consumers to put off non-essential purchases.
“Businesses and the public desperately need clarity on Britain’s future relationship with the EU. The continued risk of a No Deal Brexit is harming consumer confidence and forcing retailers to spend hundreds of millions of pounds putting in place mitigations – this represents time and resources that would be better spent improving customer experience and prices. It is vital that the next Prime Minister can find a solution that avoids a No Deal Brexit on 31st October, just before the busy Black Friday and Christmas periods.”
Susan Barratt, CEO | Food & Drink sector performance | IGD
“A late start to the summer weather in June compared unfavourably with consistently drier and warmer conditions in 2018, so while year-on-year growth in food and grocery sales last month was small, it is still encouraging.
“If the recent pick up in temperatures is sustained, there’s hope for stronger figures in July. Shoppers feel slightly more positive at the moment, with the percentage expecting to become worse off financially in the year ahead falling from 32 per cent in February to 27 per cent today.”
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About the British Retail Consortium
The BRC’s purpose is to make a positive difference to the retail industry and the customers it serves, today and in the future.
Retail is an exciting, dynamic and diverse industry which is going through a period of profound change. The BRC is committed to ensuring the industry thrives through this period of transformation. We tell the story of retail, work with our members to drive positive change and use our expertise and influence to create an economic and policy environment that enables retail businesses to thrive and consumers to benefit. Our membership comprises over 5,000 businesses delivering £180bn of retail sales and employing over one and half million employees.
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