Fashion and footwear sales last week plummeted to their lowest lowel for over two and a half years as consumers shunned the shops in favour of enjoying the highest October temperature on record.
According to the BDO High Street Sales Tracker for the week to October 2 total fashion sales dropped by 13.3%. Clothing sales fell by 13.0% and footwear sales dropped by 15.5%.
The drop in sales is the worst result since extreme snow impacted sales in February 2009.
Jamie Talmage, retail analyst at BDO, said: “It’s to be expected with the exceptional Indian summer weather. People are not particularly interested in buying clothes in this type of weather.”
He added that comparisons with last year are still very hard to beat. “The weather was very much on season this time last year, it was windy and rainy.”
Talmage said the negativity around the economic climate did little to help sales and the lack of discounting at stores also did not help drive footfall.
He added however that there is every reason to hope that retailers will cover a lot of lost ground this week with temperatures dropping and many stores launching mid-season Sales.