Shop price inflation slows
Food inflation rose to 2.2% in May from 2% in April. Non-food inflation slowed to 1.6% in May from 2% in April.
Stephen Robertson, British Retail Consortium Director General, said: "In May, overall shop price inflation slowed compared with the previous month, despite big rises in some costs.
"Past rises in the price of oil continue to put pressure on transport costs. International shipping prices are up over a third. Cotton prices are up 40%. But clothes and electricals are cheaper than they were last year, as retailers hold prices down in the face of customers' reluctance to spend. Food inflation was up slightly, but that should ease. Tinned and packet foods were the main cause because recent falls in commodities, such as wheat and coffee, have yet to work through to shop prices."
Mike Watkins, Senior Manager, Retailer Services, Nielsen added: "Food inflation that is imported, seasonal or weather related is still impacting shop prices but the rate of increase since the start of the year has started to slow. With headline sales growth in food retailing struggling to get to three per cent in recent weeks, retailers have to maintain promotions and offer further savings to get sales momentum. Shoppers continue to be price-aware and weak demand has not helped non-food retailing where we have seen more discounting and bigger price reductions - all of which can be expected to continue on the high street for the immediate future."
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