A clear picture of June shopping in the UK is emerging and shows footfall rising as the sun shone. But it's not all good news for the fashion sector as specialist fashion stores and department stores saw falling sales.
Cautious shoppers stayed away from physical stores in greater numbers in May and fashion shops suffered the most. Hopes are low for June too after the shock election result, despite the month's warm weather boost.
UK retail and fashion firms face more uncertainty as the general election result shows no party with an overall majority. There are problems ahead but also a silver lining as the soft Brexit prospects have strengthened.
UK retail footfall looked buoyant in April as new figures from specialist tracker Springboard showed a rise of 1.6%. But Easter skewed the stats and the real picture was patchy with the last two weeks proving weak.
UK consumers appeared to be in the mood to go out and to shop over the long Easter weekend with new figures showing higher footfall to high streets and online sales advancing. Easter Monday looked particularly strong.
There was good news for UK retail on Monday as footfall tracking firm Springboard predicted an encouraging uplift for Easter weekend. But fashion retailers need not get too excited as there was some bad news for them.
The prospects for UK retail remain both patchy and confusing as a new report from Ipsos Retail Performance on Friday showed poor footfall during March, despite another tracker suggesting footfall rose last month.
The weather may have been brighter in March but that didn’t mean Britons went out to buy spring fashion. That said, they did stay in to buy clothes with online sales growth easily beating that of physical stores.
Clothing and shoes saw the biggest spending falls in the UK last month said Visa, as consumers splashed out on dining and cinema trips for Valentine's Day but did not buy as much fashion as the industry would have hoped.
UK physical store footfall dropped again in January as the shift of non-food purchases online suggested it will be a tough year for stores in fashion and other key categories. Malls were the worst hit by the drop.