July Sales In France
“The sales are on!” writes France Correspondent Lucy Culpepper. “Starting today and continuing through the month of July, all over France, prices are being discounted, reduced, and slashed.
“Unlike in most of the rest of the world, where sales are staged throughout the year and at the retailer’s discretion, here in France, the retail industry is permitted to hold sales (soldes) only when the government says it’s ok. Stores are allowed to mark down prices but twice a year, every January and every July. These twice-annual soldes are big deals, indeed. Many tourists time their travels to be in the country to take advantage of them…and the French themselves are out en force, especially over the opening days. It makes for a shopping frenzy like nothing you’ve ever seen.
“Despite global economic gloom and France’s worst recession since WWII, this year’s July solde looks to be a good one for the retailers. The record low interest rates and falling inflation seem to have encouraged French consumers to get out and shop in March, April, and May, boosting French business confidence.