UK retail gross sales dipped for the fourth consecutive month in August by 0.9% with provide chain points throughout the board
- The Workplace for Nationwide Statistics (ONS) mentioned retail gross sales volumes dropped final month, following a 2.8% fall in July
- It is the primary time since 1996 that retail gross sales have dipped for 4 months in a row
- Within the two weeks to 22 August, round 6.5% of shops mentioned they had been unable to get the supplies, items or companies they wanted
UK retail gross sales defied expectations of an increase in August and dropped by 0.9 per cent, new figures present.
The Workplace for Nationwide Statistics (ONS) mentioned retail gross sales volumes dropped final month, following a 2.8 per cent fall in July.
The consecutive dips got here as a shock to analysts, who had forecast a 0.7 per cent improve for August. It represents the primary time since 1996 that retail gross sales have dropped for 4 months in a row.
UK retail gross sales defied expectations of an increase in August and dropped by 0.9 per cent, new figures present
Regardless of the gloomy outlook, retail gross sales volumes stay 4.6 per cent forward of pre-pandemic ranges.
Commenting on the newly-released figures, Jonathan Athow, ONS deputy nationwide statistician for financial statistics, mentioned: ‘Gross sales fell once more in August, although not almost as a lot as in July, and, total, remained above their pre-pandemic stage.
‘Different information recommend that the drop in meals shops’ gross sales is linked to a rise in consuming out following the lifting of coronavirus restrictions.
‘In the meantime, motor gas gross sales elevated on the month as individuals ventured out extra, however they remained beneath pre-pandemic ranges.’
Taking a look at numerous sectors, meals retailer gross sales slipped by 1.2 per cent for the month, with many patrons returning additional again in the direction of pre-pandemic habits.
It comes as information from Open Desk has proven that restaurant reservations picked up final month whereas bank card suppliers highlighted a rebound in social spending.
In the meantime, non-food shops reported a 1 per cent decline in gross sales volumes, pushed partly by malls, which noticed a 3.7 per cent plunge for the month.
Motor gas gross sales volumes rose by 1.5 per cent for the month as individuals continued to extend their quantity of journey, though this stays beneath pre-pandemic ranges.
Meals retailer gross sales slipped by 1.2 per cent for the month, with many patrons returning additional again in the direction of pre-pandemic habits
The ONS additionally highlighted that, within the two weeks to 22 August, round 6.5 per cent of shops mentioned they had been unable to get the supplies, items or companies they wanted as a result of ongoing provide chain challenges.
Malls suffered essentially the most with 18.3 per cent of those firms stressing points, adopted by outfitters at 11.1 per cent.
One other 8.9 per cent may get what they wanted, however needed to change suppliers or discover various options so as to take action.
In the meantime, 22 per cent of meals shops reported the identical concern.
Sarah Coles, a private finance analyst at Hargreaves Lansdown, mentioned that these shortages had been key in driving the downward pattern in retail throughout the board.
When it got here to purchasing habits, the proportion of retail gross sales happening on-line rose to 27.1 per cent – in comparison with 19.7 per cent earlier than the pandemic
Taking a look at Erin Brookes, managing director at Alvarez & Marsal’s European retail and shopper follow, mentioned: ‘As we speak’s figures ought to remind retailers to begin planning for Christmas, which might be some of the thrilling on report, particularly given restrictions final 12 months.
‘Will probably be vital to know shopper calls for and solidify nimble and responsive provide chains, that are solely as robust as their weakest hyperlink.
‘Regardless of the turbulent instances, companies ought to be asking themselves methods to bolster and diversify their provide chains in order that they aren’t simply specializing in rapid points however are additionally future-proofing their enterprise towards long-term adjustments in shopper habits.’