Shoppers searching for new fashions ahead of the summer revived retail sales in May after two months of stagnation, a report said.
The latest British Retail Consortium-KPMG survey showed that total retail spending lifted by 1.4 per cent compared to a year ago, while like-for-like sales rose by 0.5 per cent last month. This follows two flat months in April and March.
Clothing retailers drove high street sales with a strong performance in May on the back of brighter weather, following a poor month in April that saw unseasonable conditions dampen shoppers’ interest in new spring and summer ranges. Children’s clothing and footwear were the standout fashion categories, as parents prepared for the half-term school break.
BRC chief executive Helen Dickinson said: “Clothing made a big comeback this month after suffering declines in April. This appears to be due to consumers waiting for just the right moment before embarking on their pre-summer spending. “However, with signs that the UK’s economy is slowing, it’s unlikely that this is the beginning of a complete reversal of fortunes.”
David McCorquodale, UK head of retail at KPMG, said: “With a summer of sport kicking off in June and festival season getting under way, retailers will be hoping that the feel good factor coupled with a dose of summer sunshine will keep the tills ringing over the summer months.”