Retailers continue to suffer with the closure of 14 stores per day -
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Debt Problems: Retailers Suffer

Retailers continue to suffer throughout 2011 with the closure of 14 stores per day

A report commissioned by PwC (insolvency practitioners) from the Local Data Company (LDC) highlighted the difficulties being faced by retailers in 2011 with an average of more than 14 stores per day closing for business.

The report covered multiple retailers in 500 town centres throughout the UK and revealed there had been a net reduction of 174 shops in 2011 which is a decrease of 0.25%.

The report also revealed that not all sectors suffered with charity shops in particular showing strong growth. There is however calls for the amount of charity shops to be capped in city centres due to their expanding presence having a detrimental impact on the high street.

Bakers, pound shops, credit unions and supermarket chains like Tesco Metro have also bucked the trend showing positive growth in a difficult market.

The data revealed worst hit sectors included, home furnishings, bookshops, electrical, menswear, bars/pubs, off-licences and travel shops as people's finances continue to struggle with the rising cost of living. The worst sectors overall were both bookshops and electrical stores due to increased completion from online businesses increasing their share of the market.

PwC insolvency partner Mike Jervis said: "A common feature of retailers in distress who we are dealing with is that they have too many locations. Relatively long leases have been entered into in a growth phase of the economy which are no longer appropriate".

In a statement from Local Data Company, director Matthew Hopkinson said: "With the move to out of town locations and the numbers of closures being announced currently, this decline is likely to continue into 2012 and thus lead to a rise in vacancy rates".

The prospects for high street retails in 2012 looks equally bleak with many Britons finding they have less disposable income due to stunted wage increases, high inflation and government austerity measures.

With unemployment continuing to rise, this can have the knock on effect of creating insecurity which in turn makes people think twice before spending what spare cash they have.

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