Your browser is no longer supported. For the best experience of this website, please upgrade to a newer version or another browser.

Your browser appears to have cookies disabled. For the best experience of this website, please enable cookies in your browser

We'll assume we have your consent to use cookies, for example so you won't need to log in each time you visit our site.
Learn more

Bumper Christmas fails to boost December sales

High street sales in December fell for the fourth year in a row, as last minute domestic and international shoppers went online for festive deals.

Total like for like sales were down by -0.1% according to BDO’s high street sales tracker. Shopping centres bore the brunt of the downturn, falling by -5.2% in the second week of December.

Fashion like for like sales were also down by -1.07%, the worst result for the sector since September. A positive final week, up 8.3%, was not enough to combat unseasonably warm weather and lower footfall earlier in the month.

However, BDO stressed the sales slump could have been “considerably worse” were it not for a stellar performance in the week leading up to Christmas Day.

The figures come the same week Next announced full price sales for the 54 days to 24 December had slipped 0.4% year on year. The retailer also cut its central profit guidance for the full year to £792m, down from £805m.

Christmas trading was steadier at John Lewis, where sales were up 36% to £175.6m in the week up to and including 24 December but sales fell 9.4% in the first week of Sale.

Business recovery firm Begbies Traynor warned the gloomy outlook for retailers had spooked investors and added that more profit warnings were likely.

Readers' comments (2)

  • Anyone out there that still thinks Black Friday was a good idea?

    Unsuitable or offensive? Report this comment

  • Emma Hayes

    Black Friday-an example of retailers all jumping off the same cliff because everyone else is doing so. We have to find a way out of the discount downward spiral.

    Unsuitable or offensive? Report this comment

Have your say

You must sign in to make a comment

Please remember that the submission of any material is governed by our Terms and Conditions and by submitting material you confirm your agreement to these Terms and Conditions. Links may be included in your comments but HTML is not permitted.