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Footwear sales outperform clothing in July

Warm temperatures at the beginning of July followed by cooler, wetter weather at the end of the month has driven footwear sales in the UK, according to figures by the British Retail Consortium (BRC) and KPMG.

Total retail sales rose by 2.2% in July, compared with a 1.3% increase for the same month last year. However, they failed to match up to June’s 2.8% year-on-year increase.

Footwear was the third fastest growing category in July with sandals selling well at the beginning of the month and boots trading well across men’s, women’s and kid’s sectors at the end of the month, helped by the cooler temperatures. While discounting was strong, shoppers were also keen to snap up new ranges at full price to refresh their wardrobes.

In clothing womenswear was “tough” and just about reached positive figures. However, menswear and kidswear performed better with good back-to-school trade.

KPMG head of retail David McCorquodale said: “Heading into the start of school summer holidays, sales of children’s footwear and fashion were given a boost as families kitted out the kids ready for the beach. While women’s fashion had a surprisingly weaker month in July, sales of accessories soared as ladies looked to update existing wardrobe staples with new bags and shoes.”

He added: “Looking ahead, retailers will be hoping more summer sunshine, coupled with confirmation that interest rates will stay at 0.5%, will keep consumer confidence riding high into August.”

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