Retail sales in Scotland edge down in December
According to figures released by the Scottish Retail Consortium and KPMG in their Scottish Retail Sales Monitor, total retail sales declined by 1.1% year-on-year in the month with like-for-like sales falling by 2.9%. Total food sales were 0.3% down on December 2012 while non-food sales decreased by 1.7%.
The Retail Sales Monitor also found that December total sales growth was lower in Scotland than in the UK but that the three-month average for food was in line with the UK.
David McCorquodale, head of retail at KPMG, said: "On the face of it, the Scottish sales ended a year of recovery on a negative note. A combination of an extremely competitive market in the food and drink sector and gales in the few days before and after Christmas dampened an otherwise positive year.
"The best performing category was fashion and footwear but the evidence suggests this volume was driven by significant discounting, so retailers will be counting the cost in margin terms once they've added all the numbers up."
David Lonsdale, director of the Scottish Retail Consortium, added: "The overall trend for sales in 2013 was generally positive, however these figures show a small setback in December which will be disappointing news for Scottish stores but will hopefully prove short-lived."
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