Footfall suggests accelerated retail recovery

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Footfall figures have pointed to an accelerated recovery of the UK’s bricks and mortar retail market in June.

Ipsos Retail Performance, global retail and footfall consultants, compile the Retail Traffic Index (RTI) which is compiled from the number of shoppers entering 4,000 non-food retail stores across the UK.

In June the RTI increased by 7.6 percent on May but fell 2.5 percent year-on-year on June 2013, much in line with the month’s forecasts.

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Footfall for Q2 closed 1.2 percent down on that of Q2 2013, an improvement on the deficit of 1.6 percent in Q1. This is the fifth quarter in a row that the year-on-year gap has narrowed, which Ipsos Retail Performance believes ‘underlines the progressive nature of the recovery on the high street’.

Scotland and Northern Ireland posted the strongest regional performance in June, with footfall rising 15.6 percent on May, and 2.3 percent year-on-year. Ipsos expects this to continue in July, with an influx of visitors to Glasgow for the Commonwealth Games. The Midlands too benefited from rising year-on-year footfall seeing a 0.2 percent rise in June, which follows a 0.6 rise in May.

Footfall in London and the South East was still 4.1 percent down year-on-year for June but recorded 7.4 percent growth from May.

June results were slightly better than predicted by Ipsos with less disruption than predicted to weekly shopping routines during the FIFA World Cup. England’s early exit from the competition, coupled with the late kick-off times, reduced the negative impact on footfall that is normally felt during major sporting events. Customers were also out in force for the arrival of the summer sales, which began breaking during the second week of June, a week earlier than last year.

Earlier this week figures from IMRG Capgemini e-Retail Sales Index attributed a sharp, five percent month-on-month drop in online sales between May and June this year to the World Cup and England’s early exit.

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