Thursday, 19 December 2019 19:31 WIB |
British shoppers kept a tight grip on their wallets last month as retail sales grew at their slowest annual pace since April 2018 amid uncertainty about Brexit and December's election.
Thursday's figures from the Office for National Statistics were collected before Black Friday sales promotions, but the ONS said it was confident the slowdown in year-on-year sales growth to 1.0% in November from October's 3.1% was not distorted by the timing.
Economists polled by Reuters had expected a smaller slowdown in growth, to 2.1%.
Spending by shoppers had been supporting the overall economy for most of the time since 2016's Brexit referendum; Thursday's figures added to other signs of a slowdown in the run-up to last week's election.
Excluding fuel purchases, retail sales growth was the weakest since October 2017.
Retail sales in November were down 0.6% from October, and have now failed to show any monthly growth for four months in a row - the longest such run since at least 1996.
Source : Reuters