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Industry News Health of UK retail steadies in quarter two, says Retail Think Tank

Published on July 24th, 2020 | by The GC Team

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Retail resurgence boosted by non-food sales growth

Figures released today by the Office for National Statistics (ONS) show that in June 2020 the volume of UK retail sales increased by 13.9% compared to May 2020, “as non-food and fuel stores continue their recovery from the sharp falls experienced since the start of the coronavirus pandemic.” Non-food retail in the UK suffered during lockdown since most outlets were designated “non-essential” and had to close.

This is the second consecutive month-on-month increase in volume retail sales in the UK, and, says the ONS, has “brought total sales to a similar level as before the coronavirus pandemic.”

However, warns the ONS, “there is a mixed picture in different store types.” In June, while non-food stores showed strong monthly growth of 45.5% in the volume of sales, “levels have still not recovered from the sharp falls experienced in March and April.”

Non-store retailing reached a new high since the start of the pandemic, with volume sales 53.6% higher than the last pre-lockdown month of February. But the surge in migration to online shopping may be showing signs of slowing down: the proportion of online spending reduced to 31.8% in June when compared with the record 33.3% reported in May. It is, however, still a considerable increase from the 20.0% reported in the pre-pandemic month of February.

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