As BOE MPC readies for September policy decision, UK retail sales underline struggles consumer facing.
UK retail sales fell sharply in August, underlining the struggle consumers are having with rising prices and falling real incomes. By volume, sales fell 1.6% month-on-month with sales lower in all sub-sectors of the data for the first time since July 2021, the Office for National Statistics said Friday. Sales excluding fuel also fell 1.6% m/m.
With energy prices continuing to put pressure on the consumer, an ONS spokesperson said sales by volume would need to rise by 3.1% in September for the sector to have a flat contribution to overall GDP in Q3. That, going into a Bank of England policy meeting, will show the Monetary Policy Committee just how difficult conditions are on the UK high streets.
Ahead of the UK markets opening, sterling was trading lower against the pound, falling to a near 40-year low on the data at $1.1418 -- just above the $1.1410 seen on Sept. 7