New research published by the British Retail Consortium (BRC) indicates that retail sales in Scotland continued to drop in May, despite the improved weather conditions.
This is particularly disappointing, as the organisation had expressed optimism that a positive turn in the weather would improve the sector's economic performance.
The High Street Sales Tracker from BDO indicates that like-for-like sales in medium-sized chains throughout the UK grew by 1.3 per cent in May when compared to last year.
However, the BRC claims that when inflation is taken into account in Scotland, volumes have actually fallen north of the border.
Scottish Retail Consortium director Ian Shearer said that the underlying economic picture remains weak.
He added that food sales did not perform as badly, commenting: "Food retailers had a brighter month with changes in consumer preferences reflecting the shift in temperatures. Demand for roasting joints and soups turned into sales of salad and barbecue meats for the final week."