Retailers adopt 'wait and see approach' to Brexit

28 February 2017 - Janet Bird

stores in street

A new study suggests retailers are adopting a 'wait and see' approach to Brexit, with 68 percent holding off on putting firm plans in place for the future post Europe.

A survey of 250 decision makers in the UK retail world commissioned by Global-e, also found 62 percent of retailers were either "confident" or "very confident" they could continue to flourish internationally once Article 50 is triggered.

Fifty-one percent of retailers questioned believed the Brexit vote in June had already impacted UK sales. In the case of 21 percent of respondents, this had meant a rise in sales. While 30 percent had experienced a fall in sales, 47 percent had noticed no difference.

The survey found 48 percent of retailers expected the economy to weaken after the government triggers Article 50, leading to increases in the cost of importing goods. Linked to this, 63 percent of retailers expected prices in UK stores to increase.

Overall, the survey painted a mixed picture of the Brexit impact on retail, with 32 percent of UK retailers who sell internationally seeing a rise in online orders from abroad as international shoppers take advantage of the weak pound.

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