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30,000 retailers in 'significant distress’

More than 30,000 UK retailers are in “significant financial distress” despite it being the busiest shopping period of the year, new data has shown.

Research from insolvency firm Begbies Traynor showed that 8,500 of the 30,000 retailers facing falling sales are online retailers. The figure is up 2% on 2017 ad up 49.5% since 2007, the Guardian reported.

However, at 3,300 the total number of fashion retailers in difficulty is down 6% compared with last Christmas, and the overall number of high street retailers in distress is down 8% to 17,226.

Julie Palmer, partner at Begbies Traynor, said: “As we near the end of the crucial festive period, many retailers are pinning their hopes on a final flurry of shopper activity this weekend, as more are plunged into significant financial distress. To say 2018 has been a tumultuous year is something of an understatement. Even online, which has been hailed as the future of the sector, is not immune.”

The latest data from Springboard showed footfall on the Saturday before was Christmas down 0.7% compared with last year.

Readers' comments (1)

  • Most independent womenswear boutiques in my area have panicked and thrown discounts at customers, but have achieved little. One in particular has advertised all footwear and fashion and -50% but theres no queue at the door, in fact I would say it has made little difference, people have little interest in buying clothing at the moment. Clothing is far down people’s list of priorities in general and especially in the run up to Christmas. Clearing stock at the end of season is increasingly difficult, customers only want what they want when they want it and even massive discounts don’t guarantee that a line will clear any more. Retailers with huge stock piles are going to be in trouble. Most people have wardrobes full of clothes and it takes a lot to tempt them these days !

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