UK retail sales jump in October as shoppers go bargain hunting


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The Independent Online

Retailers got an early boost in the run-up to Christmas as shoppers threw caution to the wind in October, official figures showed.

Retail sales volumes surged more than twice as fast as expected over the month, rising 0.8 per cent as shoppers were also encouraged by price cutting.

With the weather still warm, clothing stores struggled to bounce back from a catastrophic 5.9 per cent plunge the previous month, but consumers spent elsewhere, particularly on household goods, as inflation fell back and boosted disposable incomes.


“October’s healthy rebound in retail sales is particularly welcome and reassuring news... It is also encouraging for retailers’ hopes that this will be a decent Christmas for them,” IHS Global Insight’s Howard Archer said.

The ONS’s retail price benchmark, its so-called deflator, signalled average prices down 1.5 per cent year on year, the steepest annual decline for more than a decade, as petrol prices fell to their lowest for four years.