Retail news round-up: Hot weather drags fashion sales in September, Walmart cuts profit forecast, and supermarket theft in Australia

Fashion retailers blame hot weather for 6% plunge in September sales

High-street sales across all sectors slipped 2.8% last month amid a warm month.

Fashion sales slumped 5.9% year-on-year in September, mainly due to unseasonably warm weather that deterred purchases of autumn and winter collections, according to BDO.

Every week in September saw negative year-on-year sales for fashion, the accountancy and business advisory firm’s industry data showed.

Walmart eyes deeper online push as it cuts profit forecast

Walmart Stores has trimmed its profit forecast for the next two years following the decision to boost online sales, The Times reported.

The US retailer has revealed that its profit will remain flat in 2017, revising its earlier growth prediction.

Walmart said the profit in 2018 would be at the bottom end of its previous forecast of between 5% and 10% growth.

Chief financial officer Brett Biggs said the retailer would lower its capital spending on new store openings to about 20%.

Spending, which will be $11bn next year and in 2018, will be focused on growing ecommerce and overhauling existing stores, Biggs added.

Coles says 11,000 customers stole goods at self-service checkouts

Australian supermarket chain Coles has revealed that it has caught approximately 11,000 shoppers stealing goods at its self-serve tills across the country over the past year, The Guardian reported.

“There has been a normalisation of theft at self-serve checkouts over the last few years,” said Martine Alpins, a spokeswoman for Coles.

In a move to thwart petty thefts, New South Wales police are helping supermarkets in a crackdown.

“No matter how small you think it is, even if it’s the avocado and you’re saving $2, it’s still shoplifting,” detective superintendent Murray Chapman told reporters outside a supermarket in Sydney.

Hamleys launches toys collection for Christmas

Hamleys has unveiled its Christmas toys collection, along with half a million more gadgets, gizmos and talking pets, the Daily Mirror reported.

The toys retailer said the line-up includes social media hit Pieface Showdown, the BeanBoozled spinner game and a C-3PO-inspired virtual reality headset that works with the Star Wars website.