John Lewis sales dropped 3.4 per cent year-on-year in the week to July 2nd, according to a trading update released by the department store group today.
The retailer reported a really strong start to its Clearance period during the previous week, but trading has reverted back to similar levels to those seen earlier in the year.
Some £64.73 million went through the tills over the course of the seven days, but its Fashion and Home categories were well down on last year, dropping 5.2 and 8.9 per cent respectively.
Electricals & Home Technology (EHT) trading on the other hand grew 7.6 per cent year-on-year, thanks largely to the success of the John Lewis Clearance.
Robbie Feather, Buying Director EHT at John Lewis, said: “IT continued to fly at +31 per cent year-on-year, large electrical +16 per cent and small electrical +9 per cent.
“We continue to see good growth from new technologies, namely Kindle and iPad, but the real volume is coming from our core assortments: laundry, food preparation and laptops, to name a few.”
Although overall weekly sales declined, Johnlewis.con performed favourably with sales growth of 19 per cent, continuing a strong run of form since the turn of the year.
Feather also noted that despite the fall-back in customer spending, sales for the first ten days of its Clearance period are up nine per cent year-on-year, although the discounting phase began slightly later in 2010.
Meanwhile trading at fellow John Lewis Partnership retailer Waitrose jumped 9.2 per cent compared to the same week last year.
The grocer’s Retail Director Tony Solomons said that the new Love Life range proved popular, aided by the launch of a new TV advertising campaign.
“A return to warm weather at the very end of the week saw a strong demand for barbecue and other warm weather lines,” he explained.
“The new Love life range of delicious and nutritionally balanced food continues to sell well in branches, with sales up 30 per cent on some lines compared to last week.”