Apparel Sales at Japanese Dept. Stores Down for 6 Straight Months

According to the Japan Department Stores Association, same-store sales in May 2018 (80 firms, 220 stores) decreased by 2.0% compared to the same month of last year to 450,592 million yen, thus decreasing for the first time in three months.

Sales were supported by sales of luxury goods and inbound demand, but low temperatures slowed down sales of summer items, and Saturdays numbered one day less than May 2017.

Apparel sales decreased by 5.8% to 140,408 million yen, thus decreasing for the sixth consecutive month. Apparel sales decreased across the board: men’s wear, 30,765 million (down 8.2%); women’s wear, 88,516 million yen (down 4.9%); and children’s wear, 11,445 million yen (down 7.0%).

Meanwhile, sales of sundries, of which cosmetics and luxury goods were favorable, increased by 6.7% to 90,712 million yen, thus increasing for the eighteenth straight month. Sales of personal effects rose 0.1% to 62,470 million yen, up for the fifth consecutive month.