Scotland’s monthly retail sales rose by 1% in September 2012 but continue to lag behind those for overall UK, according to the data released by Scottish Retail Consortium (SRC).

Like-for-like sales decreased 0.8% in September comparitively little higher than the 0.6% fall recoded for the corresponding month in 2011.

While food sales were 3.4% higher, following a 1.5% rise last year, non-food sales declined year-on-year by 1.2%.

Total non-food sales declined by 1.2% with the best performing non-food category in September being clothing and footwear as other non-food sectors continued to struggle.

The pick-up experienced by Scotland in September was of the same magnitude as the UK but the Scottish retail growth figures are lagging 2.4 % behind the UK average.

Commenting of the September retail figures Scottish Retail Consortium director Fiona Moriarty said the situation in Scotland mirrors a slightly improving trend in the UK as a whole.

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By GlobalData

"These figures offer faint glimmers of hope after a disappointing summer for sales and two consecutive months of year-on-year falls.

"Clothing and footwear performed well in September, thanks in part to demand for warmer clothing when sunshine gave way to more autumnal conditions.

"However, it was a different story in other non-food categories, suggesting that many customers are still feeling the squeeze and postponing purchases, particularly of big-ticket items for the home."

"And overall, sales growth in Scotland has now been below the whole-UK for 18 months in a row," Moriarty added.

According to the SRC report, however, after accounting for inflation, September sales were flat in real terms. Besides, this represents the best growth over a 24 month period since the beginning of the year.