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Retail sales up slightly in July

Date Added: 08/08/2012  

Businesses in the retail sector in need of company debt advice may have seen their sales rise slightly over the course of July, according to the release of new figures.

Data in the British Retail Consortium (BRC)-KPMG Retail Sales Monitor for the month showed sales were up by 0.1 per cent on June on a like-for-like basis.

Total sales rose by two per cent during the course of July, which compares with the 2.5 per cent hike that was seen in June.

Food and drink sales were supported by the warm weather experienced by much of the UK towards the end of the month, while the start of the Olympic Games in London was also named in the report as a positive factor behind the rise in sales in the retail sector.

Many firms in the industry are still likely to be facing being served with a winding up order unless the state of the economy in the UK improved drastically in the coming months and consumers have more money to spend in shops.

Director-general of the BRC Stephen Robertson stated July was not a golden month for retail, noting: "Like-for-like sales were virtually flat compared with a year ago and total growth of two per cent was still behind inflation as consumers, dealing with squeezed budgets, prioritised their spending on essentials."

Inflation has come down to 2.5 per cent over the course of the last year from as high as five per cent a year ago, but household budgets remain stretched for families up and down the country.

Head of retail for KPMG Helen Dickinson stated July was a "lacklustre" month for those in the retail sector and suggested this is a trend that is likely to continue unless there is an improvement in the weather in the UK this summer.

"Central London's retailers are already being hit hard by shoppers actively avoiding the capital. It's likely that any blip of benefit the Games bring will be short-lived," she said.

Business minister Norman Lamb recently claimed the relaxation of Sunday trading rules for the retail industry for the course of the Olympics is going to have a positive impact on business.

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Posted by Michael Beam

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