Department store sales down 2.5%

Kyodo

Department store sales in July fell 2.5 percent from a year earlier on a same-store basis, the first decline in three months, an industry body said Tuesday.

As the main reasons for the drop, the Japan Department Stores Association cited unfavorable weather conditions and effects of stores moving up their annual summer sale to the end of June.

Summer wear sales were down 7.3 percent in July as the number of holidays was one fewer than the same month last year.

Sales of high-priced items such as jewelry grew 14.2 percent.

Department store sales at 242 stores run by 85 companies totaled ¥559.7 billion before adjustment for the number of stores.