UK retail sales suffer an unexpected 0.3% decline in October compared to September

UK retail sales suffer an unexpected 0.3% decline in October compared to September

UK retail sales fell by 0.3% in October compared to September, according to data published by the Office for National Statistics on Friday (17). The result disappointed analysts consulted by FactSet, who expected a 0.3% increase in sales for the period.

Compared to the same month last year, British retail sales contracted by 2.7% in October.

Sales volumes decreased by 1.1% in the quarter ending October 2023 compared to the previous three months.

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Motor fuel sales fell by 2.0% during the month and 0.7% in the October quarterly reading, a movement attributed to higher prices in this period.

Food store sales volume decreased by 0.3% in October, after remaining stable (0.0%) in September. Non-food store sales volumes fell 0.2% in October, after a 2.1% decline in the previous month.

For British retailers, higher costs of living, lower footfall and wet weather in the second half of the month contributed to the decline.

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