UK retailers see unexpected drop in retail sales
Retail sales in Britain fell for the fifth consecutive month, The Guardian reported. The 0.2% drop in September was unexpected, comes despite the removal of most pandemic-related restrictions, and marks the worst crisis since modern records began in 1996.
The Office for National Statistics said sales volumes fell for household goods stores, drugstores, toy stores and sports equipment stores, according to the report. Increases were reported for clothing stores, department stores and food stores.
Fuel sales also rose, reflecting the buying panic towards the end of the month as there were issues with fuel deliveries, the report said.
The September figures were announced amid growing fears about the strength of the economy as well as rising inflation and shortages of workers and goods, according to the report.
Looking ahead, retail spending is expected to rebound in October as consumers start Christmas shopping early amid concerns about the availability of certain toys and gifts, the report said.
Companies have had to pick up the pieces in the two years since the UK officially left the European Union, trying to survive amid falling revenues, additional taxes and duties and disruption to the chain. supply.
Read more: Brexit frictions boost demand for e-commerce fulfillment and logistics
In addition, the central bank of England has said that a third of small businesses in the UK are heavily in debt and warned of an increase in small business bankruptcies by the end of the year.
See more : A third of UK SMEs “highly indebted”
The percentage of small businesses in debt is more than double the amount since before the pandemic, leading the Bank of England to warn of the possible fallout from higher risk-taking and warn banks to be more cautious about digital assets.
According to the bank, small businesses, many of which had never borrowed before – and some of which would not have met lending criteria before the pandemic – accounted for two-thirds of the increase in UK business debt between late 2019 and the first quarter of this year.