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Retail

Brexit Concerns Weigh On UK Retailers, Consumers: BRC-KPMG

UK retail sales decreased by 0.5% in March, according to the latest BRC-KPMG Retail Sales Monitor, compared to an increase of 2.3% in the same period last year.

This was below the three- and 12-month average increases of 0.6% and 0.9%, respectively, the data showed.

Like-for-like sales in the UK were down 1.1% in March, however, March 2018 included the Easter period, which skews the data somewhat.

Over the three months to March, food sales increased by 0.2% on a like-for-like basis and 1.3% on a total basis, which was below the 12-month total average growth of 2.0%. Non-food sales were flat, on a like-for-like basis, and up 1.3% on a total basis, which was below the 12-month total average growth of 2.0%.

Greater Uncertainty

“Retail sales slowed in March, even when the Easter distortions were accounted for, as greater uncertainty caused people to hold off from splashing out,” commented Helen Dickinson, chief executive of the British Retail Consortium.

“Brexit continues to feed the uncertainty among consumers. For the sake of everyone, MPs must rally behind a plan of action that avoids no deal – and quickly – or it will be ordinary families who suffer as a result of higher prices and less choice on the shelves,” added Dickinson.

© 2019 European Supermarket Magazine – your source for the latest retail news. Article by Stephen Wynne-Jones. Click subscribe to sign up to ESM: European Supermarket Magazine.

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