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Retail Sales Fall At Record Rate (U.K)

Posted by retailigence on September 5, 2008

Retail sales fell in June at the fastest rate seen since records began in 1986.(u.k) Figures from the Office for National Statistics showed that every sector bar one had shown a decline, with the worst-hit, textiles, clothing and footwear, dropping 6.9% compared with the previous month. It followed a 3.5% jump in sales in May that analysts said may have been prompted by a spell of sunny weather. The figures show that consumer spending is slowing and will add to economic gloom amid sharp house price falls and rising unemployment.

Consumers have seen marked rises in fuel, food and energy bills this year. Non-food stores as a whole suffered a 4.5% sales drop between May and June, the ONS said, which was the biggest fall on record. Sales volumes at household stores, which includes furniture and electrical sellers, fell 5%, the biggest slump since April 1991 when Britain was in the grip of recession.

High Street giant Marks and Spencer has notably been experiencing a sales slowdown in recent months, warning earlier this month that like-for-like sales fell 5.3% during the quarter to June 28. Total retail sales volumes rose 2.2% in June compared to the year before, the ONS data showed, the lowest rise since February 2006. Average weekly value of sales in June came in at £5.1bn, 3.4% higher than the previous year. The ONS data highlighted the impact of food inflation, with June’s price deflator, which measures the annual change in price in the retail sector, rising to plus 0.5%. This is the first positive figure since June last year, and was driven solely by higher food prices, which were 4.6% up year on year, the data showed.

Contributed by:- Vipin Rawat


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