BDO High Street Sales Tracker August 2019

The latest BDO High Street Sales Tracker reported that overall like-for-like (LFL) sales rose 3.7% year-on-year in August, from a 0.8% rise in the same month a year earlier. Total non-store LFLs rose 18.6% in the four weeks to 25 August.

Store LFL sales fell 0.1% in August, against a 2.7% decline last year, driven by a sharp fall in the final week of the month (-5.1%) when temperatures soared.

Overall footfall fell in three out of four weeks of the month, only rising in the final week supported by a 2.1% rise in shopping centre footfall. In contrast, retail parks saw footfall increase in the second and third weeks of the month, up 2.0% and 1.6% respectively.

Total LFL sales were strongest in the first half of the month with weeks one and two demonstrating the strongest rises up 4.49% and +7.10% respectively. This was followed by a 4.20% rise in LFLs in week three while week four saw LFLs rise just 0.31% from a 3.09% rise a year earlier.

BDO High Street Tracker – year-on-year growth

Source: BDO, Retail Economics analysis

Fashion was the strongest performing category in August with LFLs up by 5.7%, year-on-year, against a 0.7% increase a year earlier. In-store Fashion LFL sales rose once more, up 0.9% in August from a weak base of -3.9% a year ago.

Homewares also demonstrated a strong performance, with overall LFLs rising 5.0%, year-on-year, from a 3.3% decline a year ago. In-store LFLs fell by 0.8%, from a 6.1% fall in the previous year, the first decline in nine months.

Meanwhile, Lifestyle LFL sales rose 0.3% in August against a 3.0% rise a year earlier. This was despite a sharp decline in the final week of the month when sales fell 4.42%. In-store LFLs, fell 1.8% in August against a flat base a year earlier, the nineteenth month to report a decline.

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