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Volume 931: debated on Thursday 12 May 1977

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asked the Secretary of State for Prices and Consumer Protection what is the average gross profit margin in the footwear retail trade; and how this compares with the average for all retailing.

My hon. Friend will realise that information given to the Price Commission in pursuance of its obligations under the Counter-Inflation Act is confidential to it. However, I understand that the gross margins of retail footwear outlets vary to a great extent, but are on average in the order of 40 per cent. This compares with an average of 31ยท6 per cent. for non-food retail outlets in the year ending December 1976.