UK retail sales suffered a monthly decline of 0.8% in September, reversing a jump in August, according to new figures from the Office of National Statistics.
On a three-monthly basis, sales grew by 1.5%, the ONS said, marking the worst performance since October 2013, with non food stores provided the greatest downward pressure.
These figures dispute BRC statistics that state that retail sales rose 2.3% in September, against a growth of 1.3%.
But despite the slow growth, ONS senior statistician Katie Davies said there is a continuation of the underlying trend of steady growth in sales volumes following a weak start to the year, and a background of generally rising prices.
“These increased costs are reflected in the more rapid growth in the amount spent when compared with the quantity bought,” she added.
Year-on-year, the quantity bought in the retail sector increased by 1.2% in September, with non-food and non-store retailing all providing growth.
Online sales values increased year-on-year by 14%, accounting for approximately 17% of all retail spending.