John Lewis sees further slowdown in weekly sales

| January 28, 2011
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There is further evidence today of a slowdown in consumer spending after the John Lewis Partnership, which is regarded as a barometer of British retailing, reported a further fall in weekly sales.

The renowned employee-owned department store said department store sales fell 2.2% to £50.1 million in the week to 22 January.

In the week to 15 January, the department store chain also reported a fall in sales – which was attributed to the VAT hike from 17.5% to 20%.

Prior to the VAT hike, sales surged 38.7%.

Commenting on today’s figures, the company said: “It was a quieter week for John Lewis but the comparisons against last year are difficult to read due to periods of heavy snowfall in the first week of January last year and the resulting uplift in trade over the following two weeks.”

Meanwhile, sales at its Waitrose supermarket chain also slowed, with sales up 5.5% on the year to £93.2 million in the week to 22 January.

However, the luxury chain is still one of the UK’s fastest growing supermarkets.

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