13 March 2017 - Janet Bird
Falling sales made last month the worst February in eight years for high street retailers, new data has shown.
Accountancy firm BDO's High Street Sales Tracker revealed like for like sales fell by 2.2 percent in February, compared to the same period last year when sales were down 1.7 percent year on year.
This was the fourth February running to record a drop in sales, with fashion retailers once again the worst hit with a 3.4 percent reduction in sales year on year.
However, homeware sales also declined by 1.4 percent, the first fall experienced by this sector since June last year.
Storm Doris is thought to be at least partially to blame for the drop in spending in-store, with people opting to stay at home rather than brave the elements to go shopping.
However, Doris cannot be blamed for February's slowdown in online sales growth, which the BDO research suggests dropped to just 19.9 percent. Consumer caution generated by fears for the economy moving forwards and the inflationary cost pressures which have forced some retailers to increase prices are thought to be among the factors behind the slowdown in online sales growth.