John Lewis sales affected by Olympics

John Lewis saw its sales growth ease last week, with demand sapped by a spell of hot weather and the opening of the Olympics.

The employee-owned retailer said yesterday that its department store sales increased 6.2 per cent year-on-year to £56.6 million in the week ending last Saturday.

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There was a mixed performance for the chain’s three Scottish stores with Aberdeen recording a 3.7 per cent fall, while Edinburgh was up by 11.1 per cent and Glasgow rose 9.9 per cent.

John Lewis, which has a bias to the south-east of England, has set the pace in the retail sector this summer as the deluge of rain has driven footfall from the high street to the covered shopping centres where its stores are often located. Wet and cold weather is also favourable for its key household goods business.

The latest headline growth of 6.2 per cent compares with rises of 11.2 per cent and 17.3 per cent in the previous two weeks. However, last week saw an 86 per cent uplift in sales of London 2012 merchandise.