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Retail

UK Retail Sales Fall For Second Month In June: CBI

By Reuters
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UK Retail Sales Fall For Second Month In June: CBI

British retail sales fell again in June as household finances were squeezed by the rising cost of living but stores expected sales volumes to stabilise next month, a survey showed on Monday.

The Confederation of British Industry's (CBI) monthly distributive trades index fell to -9 from -10 in May.

Martin Sartorius, CBI principal economist, said retailers would continue to face challenges in the coming months.

'Difficult Trading Environment'

"Another contraction in sales volumes attests to the difficult trading environment being faced by the retail sector. Households' finances are still under pressure from high inflation," Sartorius said.

A measure of expected sales in the month ahead remained flat at zero.

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The CBI said retail sales volumes were average for the time of year at +1% in June compared with -18% in May, and were expected to remain broadly in line with seasonal norms in July at -2%.

Britain's inflation rate came in higher-than-expected at 8.7% in May and April.

With price growth far above the Bank of England's 2% target, analysts expect the central bank to continue raising Bank Rate having already raised it 13 times in a row since December 2021.

Read More: Why Is UK Food Inflation So Stubbornly High?

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Latest data from the Office for National Statistics unveiled that British retail sales unexpectedly rose in May from April, suggesting most consumers were coping with high inflation's squeeze on their spending power.

"Retail sales grew a little in May, with online shops doing particularly well selling outdoor goods and summer clothes, as the sun began to shine," ONS senior statistician Heather Bovill said.

News by Reuters, edited by ESM – your source for the latest retail news. Click subscribe to sign up to ESM: European Supermarket Magazine.

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