Total Scottish sales in March increased by 1.8% compared with last year (March 2012), when they had increased by 1.8% according to the SRC/KPMG Scottish Retail Sales Monitor published today.
Like-for-like sales increased by 0.9% on last March, when they had increased by 0.9%. Taking account of shop price inflation at 1.4%, March total sales were up 0.3% in real terms.
Total food sales were 5.2% up on March 2012, when they had risen by 4.2%. This matched January's growth, which had been the strongest since April 2011.
Total non-food sales declined by 1.4% on a year earlier when they had decreased by 0.4%. The prolonged cold hit Clothing and Footwear, which recorded its worst performance since April 2012.
While Scottish growth remained below that of the UK, the 3-month average growth for Scotland continued to improve with the strongest since April 2011.
Fiona Moriarty, Director General of the Scottish Retail Consortium, said: "All in all, this is a decent showing which rounds off the best quarter for Scottish sales since March 2011. While Scottish sales growth still lags behind the UK as a whole, this puts both the like-for-like and total three-month average firmly back into positive territory after a fairly subdued February."