Hammerson reports rise in shopper numbers

Retail property giants Hammerson has reported a rise in footfall across their UK destinations amid consumer uncertainty.

The company’s retail tracker which analyses sales activity across its nationwide retail properties reported a 0.3 per cent rise in footfall for the first half of 2016. This is above the national average of -1.6 per cent.

Conversely they reported a 0.3 per cent fall in like-for-like sales in the same period, painting yet another mixed picture of consumer patterns and uncertainty for retailers in light of June’s EU referendum.

The report also shows a sharp rise in sales in the sport and leisure sectors. Compared with other fashion sales, sporting items rose 7.5 per cent overall in the first half of the year, and a massive 16.8 per cent in June spurred on by the popularity of British sporting events.

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Other top performers include jewellery which has reported a 3.5 per cent rise in the six months up to June. Similarly, sales in this sector rose 2.4 per cent in June alone.

These figures also show that consumers have preferred to spend more on one or a few luxury items, rather than lots of cheaper items. Engagement rings and other luxury items like Rolex watches performed well.

“Despite the first half of the year revealing a mixed picture for retail it is encouraging to see that although consumers might be taking a more cautious approach to spending, they are still heading out into the shops,” Hammerson chief executive David Atkins said.    

“The appetite for both jewellery and sports-related goods has been notable throughout this year, and we anticipate this trend to continue through the remainder of the summer with the Olympics serving as further inspiration for shoppers.” 

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