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UK retail sales go into reverse this month, CBI survey shows

UK retail sales go into reverse this month, CBI survey shows

(Reuters) -British retail sales softened this month after a recovery in May, and stores expect another drop next month, an industry survey showed on Wednesday.

The Confederation of British Industry’s monthly retail sales balance, which measures volumes compared with a year ago, fell to -24 in June from +8 in May.

“Unseasonably cold weather in June may have played a role, but its notable that internet retail sales fell sharply in our survey, too,” Alpesh Paleja, interim deputy chief economist at the CBI, said.

Official data last week showed retail sales surged in May, after heavy rain kept shoppers away in April.

Average wages are now rising faster than inflation and consumer sentiment in June had recovered to its highest since November 2021, according to figures on Friday from Britain’s longest-running consumer confidence survey.

Still, the CBI survey pointed to another difficult month for retailers in July. Its gauge of expected sales in July showed a reading of -9, indicating a modest annual drop in sales volumes, versus expectations of -4 for June in last month’s survey.

The CBI survey of 58 retail chains was conducted between May 24 and June 13, before a period of unusually warm weather towards the end of the month.

(Reporting by Andy Bruce; editing by David Milliken)


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