UK Retail Sales Show The Economy Is Improving
According to the Office for National Statistics, UK retail sales marked a second consecutive increase in May and showed that British economy was recovering. Retail sales volumes rose 1.3% mom. April’s numbers were revised up to 1.8%. The Reuters forecast suggested a 0.5% rise.
Consumers spent more on food and household products in the run-up to the recent royal wedding. In the three months to May, sales grew 0.9% after a 0.2% rise in the Q1. In contrast to 2017, sales volumes surged 3.9%, marking the maximum of more than a year.
The Bank of England projects that shoppers will experience the pros of weakened inflation and growing wage.
And yet, many retailers felt burdened. Chains such as Marks & Spencer and House of Fraser have been forced to shut stores as consumers shop online for cheaper products and other retailers have even quit the business. The retail price deflator (gauge of inflation used in the retail sales data) was up by an annual 2.4% in May, higher than April’s 2.2%. In cash terms, retail sales increased 6.3%, which marked a yearly maximum.