Thursday, 20 February 2020 16:55 WIB |
ECONOMY |UK Retail SalesEkonomi inggris
British shoppers started spending again at the start of this year after a very sluggish end to 2019, adding to signs that improved sentiment since December's election is translating into stronger economic activity.
Retail sales volumes rose 0.9% on the month in January on a seasonally adjusted basis, after a 0.5% fall in December, Britain's Office for National Statistics said on Thursday.
This was the biggest rise since March and a stronger turnaround than the 0.7% month-on-month growth predicted on average by economists in a Reuters poll.
The bounce back was even more marked if fuel sales are excluded, with sales up 1.6% on the month, the biggest increase since May 2018 and above all forecasts in the Reuters poll.
Consumer demand faltered in the latter part of 2019 against a backdrop of political deadlock in parliament over Brexit.
This culminated in a snap election in December that returned Prime Minister Boris Johnson to office with a comfortable majority. Business and consumer sentiment has improved since then, as Britain left the EU on Jan. 31 with an 11-month transition deal.
Sales at petrol stations fell by 5.7% in January, the largest since April 2012, which the ONS linked to higher fuel prices, while clothing sales grew by the most since May 2018 after several months of weakness.
Source : Reuters