Good news from the high street according to The John Lewis Partnership. “Another cracking week, up 15.5 per cent on last year.
"We had a double-digit increase every day until we got to Saturday when, the mixture of better weather and the temptations of the FA Cup Final, meant a slightly quieter day but nevertheless a good increase on a year ago at +9 per cent. Overall footfall was driven by heightened awareness of 'Never Knowingly Undersold' both in our shops and online.”
All bar five branches put on an increase with Bluewater again taking pole position at +22 per cent, closely followed by Oxford Street at +18 per cent. There was then a neck-and-neck tussle between Peter Jones, Trafford, Southampton and Cambridge all around the +13 per cent mark. John Lewis Direct put in another fantastic performance at +49 per cent, with Fashion more than doubling sales from a year ago and both Home and EHT* putting on strong double-digit advances.
In the North Trafford was up 13% but Liverpool was flat with no increase. John Lewis is a great barometer of retail because the data is released weekly. OK the figures are in value and not necessarily like for like but the numbers were dire in the depths of the slow down with double digit negatives across much of the group.
The figures reflect very strong growth, which suggests the economic bounce back could be much greater than current estimates suggest this year. Good news but fears of a double dip will be forgotten as concerns over inflation and interest rates will begin to make the headlines.
*Electricals and Home Technology
The views expressed are my own and in no way reflect pro.manchester policy.