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

Scottish retail sales soar in May

Total retail sales in Scotland increased by 2.6% in May compared to a decrease of 0.2% in May 2017, the Scottish Retail Consortium reports, as good weather and bank holiday encouraged shoppers.

Like-for-like sales rose by 1.8% against a rise of 0.8% in May 2017, following a rise in sales of garden furniture, barbecues, summer clothing, footwear and food.

Non-food sales saw an increase of 1.4% compared to a decrease of 3.8% for the same period last year.

The sales figures were also above the three and 12-month averages of 2.8% and -2.9% respectively.

The SRC said these figures were the best on record since January 2014 – excluding Easter distortions.

However, welcoming last month’s figures, SRC director David Lonsdale urged caution.

“Clearly one swallow doesn’t make a summer, but May’s positive figures are a balm for hard-pressed retailers.

“The figures show consumers shifting their attention to spending time outdoors which, when combined with a release of pent-up demand, saw a broadly based pick-up in retail sales over the month.

“As a result total retail sales, adjusted for falling shop prices, recorded their best monthly performance in almost four-and-a-half years.”

KPMG head of retail in Scotland Craig Cavin added: “Following a challenging April, retailers can breathe a sigh of relief after May delivered a much-needed sales uplift in Scotland. Multiple bank holidays, coupled with an extended period of warm weather, contributed to the 2.3% increase – the highest we’ve seen since 2014. 

“Nevertheless, non-food sales continue to lag slightly behind the three-month UK equivalent, and Scotland is by no means insulated from the wider challenges facing the retail industry more broadly. Across the country, businesses must focus on transforming both operationally and financially if they are to survive in a changing retail landscape.”




Readers' comments (1)

  • Is there a typo with 2.6% total retail sales increase in the opening paragraph versus 2.3% in the second last paragraph. "contributed to the 2.3% increase – the highest we’ve seen since 2014."

    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.