Retail sales pick up in June: ONS
Written by Peter Walker
Retail sales increased by one per cent in June, compared with May, with non-food stores providing the largest growth contribution.
The latest Office for National Statistics (ONS) figures showed year-on-year growth rate up by 3.8 per cent, with growth across all sectors except department stores.
Online sales as a proportion of all retailing fell to 18.9 per cent in June, from the 19.3 per cent reported in May. Non-store retailing was the largest contributor to this fall, down 3.1 per cent.
Year-on-year, the amount spent online increases by eight per cent, with all sectors showing growth, except food stores.
Kyle Monk, head of insight and analytics at the British Retail Consortium, said that the ONS has defied both analyst predictions and generally reported sentiment from retailers.
The most recent BRC and KPMG Retail Sales Monitor showed a sales decline of 1.3 per cent. Similarly, the Visa UK Consumer Spending Index showed a 1.4 per cent decline in spending for the month.
“Given that last June 2018 was such a strong trading period, it is very difficult to believe that nationally year-on-year sales rose by four per cent,” commented Monk.
“Even if one were to trust in the optimistic outlook presented by the ONS, what is clear is that retailers continue to face disproportionate cost pressures, both through increasing business rates and uncertainty caused by Brexit.”