June Apparel Sales Up for Dept. Stores but Down for Chain Stores

The Japan Department Stores Association (80 firms, 220 stores) reported that nationwide sales on a same-store basis in June increased by 3.1% over the same month of last year to 486,997 million yen, thus increasing for the first time in two months.

Sales of apparel (including accessories) grew by 4.3% to 141,120 million yen, up for the first time in seven months. Department stores started their seasonal sale earlier in the latter half of June, and demand for seasonal articles grew with the rise in temperature. In addition, there was one more Saturday in June.

Apparel sales increased across the board: men’s wear, 31,515 million yen (up 5.5%); women’s wear, 90,874 million yen (up 4.7%); and children’s wear, 8,892 million yen (up 5.1%).

Sales of luxury goods and inbound demand continued to be strong.

Meanwhile, the Japan Chain Stores Association (56 firms, 10,187 stores) reported that June same-store sales rose by 0.1% to 1,048,867 million yen. Unseasonable weather slowed down sales of apparel and home-related goods including daily necessities, sundries, medicine, cosmetics, furniture, interior goods, home appliances and other miscellaneous products, and sales of food also encountered difficulties.

Apparel sales decreased by 1.4% to 87,503 million yen: men’s wear, 17,884 million yen (down 2.2%); women’s wear, 22,398 million yen (down 3.1%); and other garments, 47,221 million yen (down 0.2%).

Sales of men’s business and casual shirts increased sluggishly, while women’s mannish suits, blouses and casual shirts sold well.