TOKYO — Sales among Japanese retailers declined in June as unusually cool weather and a strong typhoon stifled sales of summer clothing.
Fast Retailing Co. Ltd. said Monday its Uniqlo chain's June same-store sales slumped 7 percent as it blamed the weather patterns for the drop. The comps refer exclusively to Uniqlo's stores in Japan. Currently the chain has 827 stores in the country.
Other retailers saw much more modest declines. The drops came despite one more Saturday in the month compared to a year earlier.
Isetan Mitsukoshi Holdings Ltd., the country's largest department store operator, said Monday that sales at its nine main stores in Japan fell 0.4 percent in June, compared with the same month a year earlier. However, certain stores saw sales increase, such as the growth of 8.6 percent seen at the Mitsukoshi in Tokyo's Ginza district.
Sales at Takashimaya's 18 Japan stores decreased by 0.6 percent last month, with one of the largest single-store declines coming from its Yokohama store, which is currently under renovations and therefore has reduced selling space.
"Movement of summer items was sluggish among women's clothing, and...sales of men's general goods weren't able to reach the levels of the previous year," Takashimaya said in a release. "On the other hand, big ticket items such as specialty clothing and general goods, jewelry, draperies and art continued the trend from last month of outperforming the previous year's sales."
J. Front Retailing Co. Ltd. said that same-store sales at its department stores were down just 0.1 percent in June. This marks the first decline in comps for the retailer, which currently operates 21 Daimaru and Matsuzakaya department stores in Japan, in 15 months.
"Although luxury brands, watches and jewelry continued to perform well, and sales of women's clothing increased due to the success of a clearance sale, cooler temperatures than in normal years made sales of high summer fashion goods sluggish, and typhoon Guchol forced some stores to move up closing times," J. Front said in its release.
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