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Last Updated: Monday, 12 July, 2004, 21:56 GMT 22:56 UK
Mixed weather hampers High Street
England players Wayne Rooney and David Beckham
The lure of Euro 2004 kept many shoppers off the High Street
Fluctuating weather patterns and the Euro 2004 football tournament combined to stifle growth on the High Street last month, according to a survey.

A study by accountants KPMG and the British Retail Consortium (BRC) showed that annual sales grew by 5% during June, down from 6.5% in May.

The sunny weather followed by cooler wet weather helped clothing sales.

However, though the Euro 2004 contest boosted drinks and TV sales, it cut the number of people going out shopping.

'Yo-yo effect'

Womenswear, fridges and picnic products, tumble driers and DVDs were some of the more popular buys in June.

On a like-for-like basis, High Street sales expanded by 2.4% in June, down from 3.7% in May, the joint survey reported.

The slowdown in spending can also be attributed to recent interest rate rises from the Bank of England.

"The yo-yo effect of sales rising and falling month-to-month demonstrates the fragile nature of consumer confidence and the potential for harm from any further interest rate rise," said BRC director general Kevin Hawkins.

Acting head of retail at KPMG, Helen Dickinson, said retail spending held up pretty well in June.

"However, this came at a cost as a significant proportion of the High Street felt the need to go into sale slightly earlier than last year," she said.


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