Retail giant The John Lewis Partnership today said department store sales dived 9.7% in another “difficult” week for the group.
The company blamed economic uncertainty and grim weather conditions at the end of the week for dragging trading at its department stores down to £57.78m (€67.5m).
Only Monday saw an increase compared to last year, the firm said.
The worst performance came from the home department, with a fall in sales of 14.8%, while the electrical department saw an 8.5% slump and fashion sales were down 6% compared to the same period last year.
Bucking the trend were handbag sales, which saw women’s accessories sales increase in the week to last Saturday, according to the group.
Another boost came from higher sales of games consoles, with the company seeing its best week ever for Wii sales.
“The economic climate continues to be difficult, but we hope with last week’s interest rate cut, together with the news of our own investments in the future in both Bluewater and Dublin and our new TV advertising campaign, we will continue to outperform a difficult market,” John Lewis said.