LAST month’s footfall figures make “sobering reading for retailers” according to the chief executive of the British Retail Consortium.

Like-for-like retail sales declined last month as apparel demand fell sharply. Home categories including furniture were the strongest performing.

Concern over the economy has pushed consumer confidence into negative territory for the first time in 15 months according to GfK, though the appetite for big-ticket spend remains positive.

FURNITURE retail sales rose year-on-year for the 22nd consecutive month in March though the rate slowed to its weakest since last November.

retailParkStoresRetail parks were the only type of shopping destination to see more shoppers in March, according to stores group the British Retail Consortium.

The Furniture Industry Research Association (FIRA) will update stakeholders on its Circular Economy project during Clerkenwell Design Week next month.

Year-on-year floorcoverings prices were higher for the first time in over a year in March. Furniture retail price inflation declined.

UK retail sales flatlined in March according to the British Retail Consortium, but furniture continued to trend upwards against year-earlier levels.

highStreeMore independent stores opened than closed in 2015 though the net opening rate threatens to turn negative for the first time since records began.

Consumer confidence for major purchases slipped in March but remains ahead of the same month last year, according to research consultancy GfK.

Retail footfall declined over the Bank Holiday weekend but higher online sales made up the shortfall, according to retail consultancy Springboard.

Furniture prices eased at both the factory gate and retail stores in February, according to inflation data from the Office for National Statistics.

Leisure activities helped out-of-town shopping parks to attract higher footfall as consumers avoided high streets and shopping centres last month.

Furniture and lighting sales trended up in high single-digits for Irish retailers in January as the new year continued along the same vein as 2015.

The number of people working in retail will drop by almost 1 million over the next decade as stores close and new technologies displace many existing roles.

Consumer confidence took a knock in February as stock market turbulence prompted fears the economy could take a hit.

More furniture and flooring retailers saw falling sales in February compared to those reporting rises, according to the first of the monthly retail monitors.

retailParkStoresPrice inflation returned to the furniture retail sector in January as rate rises at the factory gate remained at a two-year high.

Shopper numbers increased sharply in January with rises across both types of destination most popular with furniture and floorcoverings retailers.

Big-ticket furniture lines were the headline act in January as retailers enjoyed their strongest month since September according to the British Retail Consortium.

Furniture and lighting retail sales in Ireland climbed double-digit for a fifth consecutive month in December as traders ended 2015 in positive fashion.

UK households had more disposable income to spend in December compared to last year but the rate of growth slowed to its lowest level in over a year.

Furniture sales remained in the ascendancy in December but falls in other sectors meant the total year-on-year value of retail sales fell for the first time in over six years.

Deflation returned to the furniture retail sector in December after four consecutive year-on-year rises. Carpet prices were lower for the tenth month in a row.

Out-of-town shopping parks were the only retail destination to see more shoppers in December as footfall fell on high streets and shopping centres.

furnitureQueueShoppers were out in force on Boxing Day with all types of retail destination seeing more people than the same day in 2014.

retailParkBritish shoppers’ predisposition towards spending big on home furnishings slipped in December, despite overall consumer confidence rising for the first time since the summer.

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