Small shops outdid the rest of the market in the crucial final three months of 2014, according to new figures out today.
The British Independent Retail Association (bira) said that its members beat the 0.1% third quarter growth reported by the BRC, with a slight increase to a year-on-year gain of 0.68%.
“Not a huge uplift, but the second in a row and impressive when you consider that shop prices have been falling for nearly two years,” said bira.
Despite the growth, 44% of members reported lower sales in the three months to December, with clothing sales falling 1.82%, driven by the late arrival of winter.
But the bira Confidence Index saw a near doubling of those describing themselves as “very confident” to 7.74%, gaining from whose those who had been “reasonably confident" before.