Consumers were socialising more actively last month, as well going on holiday, taking part in sports and working in their offices. And this seems to have spurred them to buy more fashion and sportswear.
Two monthly sales reports on Tuesday showed UK retail sales and consumer spending continued to recover. And the BRC and Barclaycard both said that clothing and footwear were among the strongest categories last month.
There was slightly contradictory news on consumer spending and retail sales on Tuesday as the regular monthly reports from Barclaycard and the British Retail Consortium suggested both weakness and strength.
Consumer spending on essential items grew in December by as much as 13.7% on a two-year basis, but clothing saw slower growth and department stores also lagged compared to supermarkets and discounters.
More evidence came through on Tuesday showing that fashion was a key driver of retail spending in the UK last month. Two regular monthly reports (from the BRC and Barclaycard) called out fashion as a star category.