It might not feel like it on the High Street right now, but the British Retail Consortium has said UK retail enjoyed a dazzling” December.
It reports that like-for-like sales for the month were up 2.1 per cent year-on-year, with total sales climbing 4.1 per cent.
Of course, the snow has to be blamed for something. So thanks to the lack of the white stuff this year, last year's heavy snow fall was blamed, as it made year-on-year comparisons far kinder.
The widespread heavy discounting certainly played its part, too.
"A better-than-hoped for December closed a relentlessly tough year for retailers, but these figures hinged on a dazzling last pre-Christmas week and were boosted by some major one-off factors," BRC director general Stephen Robertson stated.
"We're not witnessing any fundamental change in customers' circumstances."