Retail sales bounce back in February despite three-month slump

Online and in store retail sales bounced back in February after a two month losing streak, new data has revealed.

Office of National Statistics figures show month-on-month retail sales were up 1.4% on January and 3.7% higher than in February 2016.

But the rise was not enough to offset two consecutive months of decline in December and January. Across the three months to February, sales volumes were down by 1.4%, the largest decrease since March 2010.

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Average store prices increased by 2.8% on the year, the largest growth since March 2012.

Meanwhile, online sales increased year-on-year by 20.7% and by 3.3% on the month, accounting for approximately 15.3% of all retail spending.

Commenting on the retail figures, Kate Davies, ONS senior statistician said: “February’s retail sales figures show fairly strong growth, though the underlying three-month picture shows falling sales as February’s figures follow two consecutive months of decline in December and January. The monthly growth in February is seen across all store types.”

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