UK retail sales were hit by unseasonably cold weather in May and the trend seems to have continued in June, according to a closely watched survey.
The CBI survey registered a retail sales balance of minus 42 per cent, after 16 per cent of the retailers surveyed said sales volumes were up on a year below in June, while 58 per cent said they were down.
The balance was the lowest since the financial crisis and worse than markets expected.
The drop over the same month last year was largely expected as it compares with last June’s heatwave and the start of the World Cup, yet it raises concerns over the health of the sector in the second quarter.
“Even accounting for both factors, underlying conditions on the high street remain challenging” said Alpesh Paleja, CBI Principal Economist.
The poor June CBI reading “heightens belief that consumer spending has been markedly softer in the second quarter” said Howard Archer, Chief Economic Advisor at EY ITEM Club a consultancy.