Retail sales hit by wet weather in July
Retail sales fell by more than expected in July as unusually wet weather discouraged people from shopping.
Figures from the Office for National Statistics show that retail sales volumes dropped by 1.2% in the month following a rise of 0.6% in June.
Food store sales volumes declined by 2.6% in July as the increased cost of living and food prices continued to have an impact on trade. Furthermore, supermarkets reported that the month’s wet weather reduced clothing sales as food sales also fell back.
Meanwhile, non-food store sales volumes fell by 1.7% as the unseasonal weather reduced footfall.
Heather Bovill, ONS deputy director for surveys and economic indicators, said: “Retail sales fell sharply in July as poor weather impacted most sectors,
“It was a particularly bad month for supermarkets as the summer washout combined with the increased cost of living meant sluggish sales for both clothing and food. Department store and household goods sales also dropped significantly.”
The wet weather also meant that more shoppers switched to online shopping. This, combined with increased promotions, resulted in 27.4% of retail sales taking place online in July compared to 26% in June.
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