Clothing drives UK retail in August but footwear and leathergoods are weak

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UK retailers are feeling good about their prospects, according to a new August survey, and clothing is continuing the uptick it saw in July. In fact, clothing was a key driver, the Confederation of British Industry (CBI) distributive trades survey for August showed.

The CBI said the balance of retailers with stronger sales volumes was +24% (with 36% of retailers seeing higher sales volumes and 15% seeing lower). This is good news after July had hit a three-month low of 21% following much stronger numbers (29% and 51%, respectively) in May and June.

But there was some bad news too as footwear and leather, as well as furniture and carpets retailers reported falling sales volumes year-on-year with those falls being big. In footwear and leather, it was -70% and in furniture and carpets -33%.

However, the overall outlook remains positive with a balance of 13% expecting rising sales for September. The CBI also thinks momentum will be maintained into 2016.

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