Sales in the three months to June 2019 have shown a small increase of 0.7 per cent year on year, but have bucked up by a more considerable 1.6 per cent compared to May 2019, according to the latest Office for National Statistics (ONS) Retail Sales figures.
According to the ONS, the quantity bought in June 2019 increased by 1.0 per cent when compared with May 2019; non-food stores provided the largest contribution to this growth.
The year-on-year growth rate shows that the quantity bought in June 2019 increased by 3.8 per cent, with growth across all sectors except department stores, while May 2019 was at 2.2 per cent for the year-on-year growth rate.
Commenting on the figures, Stephen Hubble, Chief Analyst at Centtrip, says: “The High Street remains beleaguered as top household names like Debenhams, Mothercare and more recently Arcadia Group – the owner of Top Shop and Miss Selfridges – were forced to close stores and seek lower rents.”
Hubble adds: “As with all data releases these days, the finger will, no doubt, be pointed at Brexit and uncertainty around it, causing consumers to sit on their hands and put off non-essential purchases. This also fuels fears that Britain’s economy has come to a standstill as markets and investors are watching closely the drawn-out Tory leadership race. The question is whether or not retailers can weather further uncertainty and inevitable economic shocks in a no-deal Brexit scenario if Theresa May’s replacement will allow the UK to fall off a cliff. Or could there be a longer Brexit negotiation, which would take an even bigger toll on Britain’s suffering High Street? Either scenario would be detrimental for the retail sector and would weigh further on the Pound.”
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