A crucial trading day will be marred by rain, sleet and snow
Retailers' hopes of a timely lift in sales from Mother's Day this Sunday could be dashed by the unseasonally inclement weather. According to the Meteorological Office, snow showers are likely across the eastern half of the country, but even in the West, rain, sleet or even snow tomorrow is still on the cards.

A Met Office spokesman said: 'It's not a great prospect. It will be a cold feel for shoppers, although better in the West. There will still be showers in the Pennines. I wouldn't want to go out in it.'

A huge amount of trade is at stake tomorrow as shoppers search for gifts for their mothers. The BRC estimates that the day is worth approximately£1.3 billion to UK retailers. Much of that spend will go to traditional gifts, such as flowers and cards. However, the largest proportion of the buying public - 13.2 million - will buy their mother a home furnishing or garden item, spending up to£264 million.

According to the BRC, 7.6 million people will buy clothes for their mother, spending a total of£152 million.

Evolution analyst Nick Bubb notes that Mothers Day and Easter falling early this year cannot be ideal for business. The severe weather coming so late in the year, coupled with these early holidays could cause some retailers to follow in the footsteps of Boots and restate their earnings expectations.

He said: 'In the past two weeks, retailers have not had a good time. No doubt card and flower retailers will still get their usual business this weekend, but if the weather is to stay unseasonal in the next couple of days, then clothing retailers might be disadvantaged. If the coming week turns out to be bad it could force other retailers to come out with statements in the same way that Boots was forced to do.'