2870 stores shut down in first half of 2019

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PwC & Local Data Company research: 2870 high street stores closed in the six months to 30 June
Fashion retailers saw the biggest number of store closures, driven by high-profile CVAs and administrations.
// 2870 high street stores closed in the six months to June 30, research by PwC & Local Data Company shows
// This is the highest figure since records began and equates to around 16 shops closed every day
// However, a total of 1634 stores opened in the same period, up 4% year-on-year
// This results in a net closure of 1234 stores on Britain’s top 500 high streets

The number of stores closing down in the first six months of the year has reached its highest levels, with new figures indicating an average of 16 shops shutting per day.

Research from PwC and the Local Data Company shows that a total of 2870 stores across the UK closed down in the six months to June 30.

However, a total of 1634 stores opened in the same period this year, equating to a four per cent year-on-year uptick.

This resulting in a net closure of 1234 stores – an increase on the 1123 net closures in the same period in 2018.

This is the highest figure since the survey, which focuses on retail chains with more than five outlets in the UK’s top 500 high streets, began in 2010.

Fashion retailers saw the biggest declines, driven by a high number of CVAs and administrations.

They also continue to face growing competition from online retailers coupled with rising costs from business rates and growing wages against a backdrop of dwindling consumer confidence.

Restaurants, estate agents and pubs were the next big groups to record declines.

However, there were more openings of takeaways and sport and health clubs.

“The decline in store numbers in the first half of 2019 shows that there’s been no let-up in the changing ways that people shop and the cost pressures affecting High Street operators,” PwC consumer markets leader Lisa Hooker said.

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