High Street sales fell in April
UK retail sales values fell 2.3% on a like-for-like basis from April 2009, when sales had picked up 4.6%, boosted then by Easter falling in April 2009 but March 2008.
The April trading period included only Easter Sunday and Monday this year, but all of Easter in 2009. On a total basis, sales fell 0.2% against a 6.3% increase in April 2009 according to the BRC-KPMG Retail Sales Monitor.
Food sales fell back, largely reflecting Easter timing. Non-food was also affected by the earlier Easter, but also by pre-election uncertainty and consumer caution, which favoured essentials and replacements over discretionary items. Clothing and footwear slowed and homewares fell back below year-earlier levels, despite some further discounts and promotions.
Non-food non-store sales (internet, mail-order and phone sales) in April were 15.9% higher than a year ago, the same as in March and in line with previous months. But more promotions were needed to secure sales.
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