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High Street

UK retail sales to grow 12% amid back-to-school boost

This anticipated growth builds on ‘positive retail momentum’, as total retail sales rose 4.2% year-on-year in July, fuelled by pent-up demand and lifting of restrictions

UK retail sales are expected to grow 12% during the 16 August to 19 September back-to-school period compared with the same period in 2019, according to Mastercard SpendingPulse.

Year-on-year sales are also expected to grow 6.7% compared with 2020. This anticipated growth builds on “positive retail momentum”, as total retail sales rose 4.2% year-on-year in July, fuelled by pent-up demand and the lifting of restrictions.

Clothing sales are expected to increase by 18.7% compared with the same time last year, as people flock to the shops to buy new school uniforms and office clothing.

Furthermore, furniture sales are forecast to increase 11% year on year, followed by technology as electronics sales are expected to increase by 8.9% year-on-year.

Kelly Devine, divisional president, Mastercard UK and Ireland, said: “Back to school has always been a key shopping time for retailers. This year, the broader reopening of the high street brings an exciting wave of optimism as children prepare for what is hopefully an uninterrupted school year.

“This back-to-school season will be defined by choice as online sales remain robust and brick and mortar browsing regains momentum as shoppers seek to make up for lost time.”

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