Next has shared elevated quarterly sales, suggesting that warm weather and the closure of high street rivals has driven shoppers into stores.
In a trading update on Thursday, second quarter full price sales were boosted five per cent versus last year, some £50m ahead of the clothing firm’s previous guidance.
Next attributed this to a post-pandemic rebound in shoppers hunting for clothes for parties and weddings, as well as warm weather this summer.
The retailer said it suspected “that the apparent improvement in the fortunes of our stores is, to some extent, down to the number of competing stores that have closed in the last three years.”
However, the London-listed company cautioned that the stronger than expected sales performance was not expected to continue into the second half. It maintained sales guidance for the remainder of the year at one per cent growth.
“An unusually warm summer boosted sales in the first half and we do not expect a similar weather windfall in the second half,” Next explained.
What’s more, bosses warned and “the impact of inflation on consumer spending is likely to worsen in the second half.”
Full year profit guidance was hiked by +£10m to £860m, a 4.5 per cent increase versus last year.