John Lewis Partnership weekly sales continue to drag

John Lewis weekly
// John Lewis Partnership’s overall weekly sales down 1.2%
// Waitrose weekly sales marginally down by 0.6%
// John Lewis weekly sales declines 2.4%

John Lewis Partnership’s weekly update has revealed another slip in overall sales, although it was still a marked improvement on the decline it recorded last week.

For the week ending March 16, weekly sales at the retail group decreased by 1.2 per cent year-on-year, from £206.37 million down to £203.83 million.

This compares to last week when weekly sales took a 8.9 per cent hit.

Meanwhile, for John Lewis Partnership’s financial year-to-date, sales were down 1.6 per cent compared to the first same seven weeks last year.

Between the partnership’s two fascias, Waitrose performed better than John Lewis with a marginal 0.6 per cent decline in weekly sales compared to the latter’s drop of 2.4 per cent.

The upmarket grocer said its sales dip was up against a tough comparison to last year when the run-up to Easter, which fell earlier in 2018, had already started.

However, with spring fast approaching, Waitrose said there was an uplift in fresh produce sales due to the arrival of soft fruit and British asparagus.

It added that Easter sales have already delivered strong results and they anticipate it to be even higher in the coming weeks.

Meanwhile, John Lewis attributed its performance to an annualised a week which included Mother’s Day, and price matched a competitor event that was smaller than last year.

Fashion sales overall were down 0.5 per cent on the same week last year, but sales in menswear were up 9.3 per cent and womenswear sales were up 5.1 per cent.

The department store said the mixed weather drove sales of both knitwear and swimwear as customers began to think about their summer holidays.

Meanwhile, home sales were down 3.2 per cent and electrical and home technology sales were down 3.8 per cent.

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