Retail sales performance is encouraging, but significant challenges remain, warns KPMG

Retail sales performance is encouraging

Grocers were heartened to see the volume of food sales increase slightly, with seasonal delicacies hitting the shelves and an abundance of multi buy offers tempting the consumer to splurge on festive food

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David McCorquodale, UK Head of Retail at KPMG, comments on the latest retail sales figures from the Office for National Statistics (ONS):

“Most retailers were encouraged by their sales performance over the festive period, despite a pre-Christmas lull following Black Friday, as consumers waited to bag a Boxing Day bargain in the sales.”

“Online purchases remained strong and showed an increase in year on year sales in December.  The clothing and household appliances sectors performed strongly, with small beauty electrical items and the latest gadgets topping many Christmas lists.  However, with parcel backlogs caused by Black Friday, and the threat of courier companies not being able to deliver in time for Christmas, many consumers chose to click and collect or shop in store which provided a boost for the high street.”

“Grocers were heartened to see the volume of food sales increase slightly, with seasonal delicacies hitting the shelves and an abundance of multi buy offers tempting the consumer to splurge on festive food. Given the intense competition present in the food sector, this uptick in volume didn’t flow through to value but most will feel their festive campaigns hit the mark.”

“While retail sales for December do give cause for cautious optimism, retailers need to remember that upcoming changes in the political/ economic sphere could have a significant impact on the consumers appetite to spend.”

-ENDS-

 

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KPMG LLP, a UK limited liability partnership, operates from 22 offices across the UK with approximately 12,000 partners and staff.  The UK firm recorded a turnover of £1.9 billion in the year ended September 2014. KPMG is a global network of professional firms providing Audit, Tax, and Advisory services. It operates in 155 countries and has 162,000 professionals working in member firms around the world. The independent member firms of the KPMG network are affiliated with KPMG International Cooperative ("KPMG International"), a Swiss entity.  Each KPMG firm is a legally distinct and separate entity and describes itself as such.

This article represents the views of the author only, and does not necessarily represent the views or professional advice of KPMG in the UK.

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