Hard-pressed fashion retailers awaiting government plans for a major shake-up in business rates will have to wait. A call from 40 trade associations for the overhaul to be included in upcoming Budget have been dashed.
Clothing spend rose last month but the UK retail sector remains on a knife-edge with consumer confidence weak and supply chain issues a big worry, the monthly Barclaycard and BRC reports showed on Tuesday.
Xmas shopping is expected to see an early start this year in the UK with a survey showing only 9% of shoppers will leave it until December to make their purchases. But December 18 will still be the season's busiest day.
Covid-19 was no friend to cash. The pandemic saw retail transactions via payment cards rocket in 2020, according to the British Retail Consortium (BRC). Cash now accounts for just 15% of total spending in retail.
Lord Wolfson, the chief executive of high street retail giant Next, has blamed the government’s “insane” immigration policy for the major shortage of heavy-goods vehicle (HGV) drivers hitting Britain’s supply chain hard.
Just how tough UK retail’s pandemic mauling has been — especially for fashion — came into stark focus on July 30. More than one in seven stores are now vacant on UK high streets, retail parks and in shopping centres.