The fashion industry is on its steepest decline for seven years

Helen Cahill
Follow Helen
Tommy Hilfiger Women's - Alternative Views - Fall 2016 New York Fashion Week: The Shows
It's been a tough year for the fashion industry (Source: Getty)

The fashion market is on its steepest decline for seven years, according to new data, with £700m wiped off the value of the UK market since last year.

According to figures from Kantar Worldpanel, sales declined for the fourth month in a row in September as retailers continued to offer huge discounts to consumers.

Kantar said its figures didn't take into account BHS' closure, which represented £400m in sales for the industry.

Glen Tooke, consumer insight director at Kantar Worldpanel, said: "Fashion retailers are still following the same patterns of over-buying and deep discounting and consumers are increasingly reluctant to pay full price.

Read more: The fashion industry has hit negative growth for first time in six years

"Retailers have responded to falling sales by investing less in their lines, when what they need to be doing instead is addressing these problems more pro-actively."

He said that following BHS' loss from the high street this summer, it "no longer seems impossible" that another big clothing retailer from the top 10 could shut up shop.

Rank UK fashion retailers that generate sales over £700m
1 Marks & Spencer
2 Next
3 Primark
4 Debenhams
5 George
6 New Look
7 Sports Direct
8 Tesco
9 Matalan
10 Sainsbury's

Kantar reported in June that sales in the fashion market had fallen by 0.1 per cent, the first contraction in the market for six years.

Related articles