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Clothing deflation continues to build

Clothing and footwear deflation has hit an all-time high, with year-on-year levels reaching 12.8% in March – beating last month’s figure of 12%, according to data supplied by the British Retail Consortium/Nielsen.

Deflation was strongest in kidswear and womenswear, but overall clothing and footwear has now been in deflation for seven consecutive months. Discounting was a key driver of sales within this category.

This compares to the wider shop price inflation figures published today, which were 1.7% for the month. However, overall shop prices have now been in decline for 11 consecutive months.

BRC director general Helen Dickinson said: “It’s strong industry wide competition as retailers vie for a share of limited spending capacity that is driving this record breaking run. Retailers have been responding to their customers with keen prices and promotions to maintain market share, and March saw the deepest deflation for eight years and the lowest inflation ever recorded for food.”

Clothing deflation in March was above the category’s three month average of 11.6% and the 12 month average of 9.2%.

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