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Bad weather to blame for dip in UK retail sales

As per the latest BRC-KPMG Retail Sales Monitor, total retail sales in the UK decreased by 4.0% year-on-year in April, compared to a growth of 5.1% recorded in April 2023. This figure fell below the 3-month average growth of 0.5% and the 12-month average growth of 2.2%. It would seem that factors such as the bad weather, and consumer caution are partly to blame for this dip.


Non-food sales witnessed a decline of 2.8% year-on-year over the same period, compared to a growth of 1.2% in April 2023, which exceeded the 12-month average decline of 1.5%.

In-store non-food sales saw a year-on-year decrease of 2.4% over the three months to April, down from a growth of 3.9% in April 2023, falling below the 12-month average decline of 0.7%. Meanwhile, online non-food sales experienced a year-on-year decline of 5.5% in April, steeper than the 3.6% decline observed in April 2023. The online penetration rate increased slightly to 36.2% in April from 36.1% in April 2023.

Helen Dickinson OBE, Chief Executive of the British Retail Consortium, commented on the challenges faced by retailers in April due to the dampened consumer demand caused by the dismal weather.

Retailers are hopeful for an improvement in consumer sentiment through various factors like successful sporting events, and warmer temperatures.


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