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High street fashion sales falter in warm October

In-store fashion sales fell 0.9% year on year in October but this was still the category’s best performance since January, according to BDO’s High Street Sales Tracker.

Like-for-like fashion sales were negative in three out of the five weeks in October, jumping between a low of -5.2% to a high of +2%, as consumers shunned new collections in the unseasonably warm weather.

The tracker, which follows the sales of around 80 mid-market chains, found fashion fell behind sales on the high street overall with an increase of 0.7% during the month, ending a run of monthly sales falls that began with a 1.7% fall in February.

The month’s findings will add fuel to the fire of forecasters who are signalling a wider trend of consumer spend towards other segments at the expense of fashion.

Sales of lifestyle goods increased by 2.3% in October and homewares by 11.6%, while non-store sales rose 19.5% after dropping to just 12.6% in September.

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