Warm autumn impacts sales

27 Oct 2014

UK high street sales fell in September, causing concern over the state of the economic recovery, according to the Office for National Statistics (ONS).

During a time which has traditionally seen a large rise in shoppers seeking winter clothes and other seasonal purchases, sales volumes fell by 0.3% over the month of September. The ONS said that clothing and footwear sales in particular fell by 7.8% on the previous month, while shop prices fell by 1.4% compared to September 2013 – the steepest fall in five years.

An ONS spokesperson said: ‘Feedback from retailers suggested the fall was a result of unseasonably warm weather meaning consumers have delayed purchases of autumn and winter clothing’.

A preliminary estimate of current gross domestic product (GDP) has been released by the ONS, fulfilling expectations of 0.7% growth between July and September – lower than the 0.9% growth reported in the previous quarter, but overall 3% higher than the same quarter last year.

Their report also indicates increased output in the four main industrial groups: services, production, construction and agriculture.

With an imminent shift in weather, and the clocks having changed, it may well be that sales improve as more people wrap up warm and the dry spell ends.

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