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Retail sales rise in October to mark best month since January

UK retail sales rose by 1.7% year-on-year on a like-for-like basis in October with nearly all product categories seeing a degree of sales growth.

GENERAL MERCHANDISE

Retail sales rise in October to mark best month since January

UK retail sales rose by 1.7% year-on-year on a like-for-like basis in October with nearly all product categories seeing a degree of sales growth.

The figures from the British Retail Consortium and KPMG monthly retail sales monitor show that sales rose by 2.4% on a total basis to mark the strongest growth since January.

Helen Dickinson, chief executive of the British Retail Consortium, said: “October’s figures paint a more positive picture of retail sales, with an increase of 2.4% on the previous year and reaching well beyond the three-month average of 1.1%.

“It is clear from today’s figures, that despite the inflationary pressure that’s gradually building in the supply chain, retailers are currently effectively managing the additional cost burdens and continue to entice their customers with great choice and value.”

Over the three months to October, food sales increased by 0.1% on a like-for-like basis and by 1.5% on a total basis.

Meanwhile, non-food retail sales rose by 0.6% on a like-for-like basis and by 0.8% on a total basis. This represents a pick-up from September but remains below the 12-month total average growth of 1.4%

The fashion category saw a reversal of recent fortunes as new seasonal ranges drew shoppers in. The electronics category was a significant driver of the month’s performance with sales boosted by new product releases. This was compounded by international shoppers’ spending, which is soaring, as tourists take advantage of the weak pound to buy luxury goods at bargain prices.

Over the three months to October, online sales grew by 11.1% while in-store sales declined 1.3% on a total basis and by 1.5% on a like-for-like basis. The online growth was largely driven by consumer electronics category.

Dickinson added: “The choice and convenience provided to shoppers by digital channels have intensified competition over the years and will continue to do so. While retailers have succeeded to date in protecting customers from rising costs, online channels continue to become increasingly valuable as a source of information to the price sensitive customer, against a backdrop economic uncertainty.”

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