Scottish retail sales 'worst on record' in November
November retail sales in Scotland fell at their fastest rate since the Scottish Retail Consortium began compiling the sales figures 12 years ago.
Th SRC said total sales were 1.3% down on November 2010, when they had increased 3.4%. Like-for-like sales were 2.1% lower than a year ago, the worst since August and the sixth decline in the past seven months.
Despite widespread promotions, non-food sales suffered their largest year-on-year decline since May 2009 with big-ticket homeware and furniture purchases being affected the most. Food sales showed only a marginal improvement in the month.
Ian Shearer, Scottish Retail Consortium director, said: "Retailers in Scotland have had an exceptionally tough year, worse than the UK as a whole. Consumer confidence is currently lower in Scotland than the UK average and householders are more worried about jobs and the state of their personal finances. Mild weather continuing into November added to the woes of clothing and footwear retailers who struggled to sell winter ranges, and seems to have led people to begin their seasonal shopping later than a year ago."
He added: "Christmas should deliver some much-needed cheer to retailers in Scotland but they'll be worried about consumers tightening their belts again in the New Year. With no immediate hope of an upturn and damaging increases in business rates on the horizon, the start of 2012 will be a make-or-break period for some retailers."
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