Pound emerges after store sales have exceeded the expectations of the city thanks to the shopping public in March
- Retail sales increased by an unexpected 1.1 percent last month, ONS said
- The month-on-month increase was largely driven by food distributors
- Department stores and sellers of household items dropped
- The pound rose against the euro after the numbers were released
Retail sales increased by an unexpected 1.1 percent last month, reaching the third consecutive month of revenue growth, according to the Office for National Statistics (ONS).
The month-on-month bounce, mainly run by food stores, was a big beat on the 0.3 percent decline expected by the city.
The latest figures led to a jump of 0.1 percent in the pound to € 1.15.
The pound jumped against the Euro at 9:30 am when retail sales were released
In the first three months of the year, ONS said the quantity purchased increased 1.6 percent compared to the last three months of 2018.
Although it was a strong quarter for food distributors, department stores suffered declines and the people who sold household items were flat.
Many retailers struggled in March last year, when the Beast from the East flew through much of the United Kingdom and scared consumers away. The year-to-year comparison is therefore favorable, with milder weather, which means revenue per volume increases by 6.7 percent.
Shoppers splashed on food in March, US said, boosting overall retail sales
More customers migrated online last month, with the share of internet sales falling to 18.6 percent in March, from 18.1 percent in February.
Philipp Gutzwiller, head of retail at Lloyds Bank Commercial Banking, said the news is & # 39; exactly what retailers need & # 39; after a mixed Christmas sales period and heading for the important Easter holiday.
& # 39; While recent headlines show that today's environment remains a challenge for many, the past few weeks have also made it clear that strategy is the king in today's retail, & # 39; he said.
& # 39; Consumers who better monitor the value of the money they have at their disposal will be those who are successful in the coming months, those who are willing to identify new ways to create valuable customer experiences or loyalty. rewarding & & # 39;
Last week, the struggling department store chain Debenhams came under management and was handed over to its lenders, who are speeding up their plans to close around 50 of their stores.
It has also emerged this week that Monsoon and Accessorize are tackling a plan for the closure of stores, as it seeks urgent rent discounts.
Last week the struggling department store chain Debenhams became involved in prepackage management
Founder and CEO of Yomdel, Andy Soloman, said the figures & # 39; extremely positive & # 39; are for a sector that is struggling to keep its head above the water amid rising land prices, business rates and a wave of online shopping.
However, he added: "The traditional department store is particularly at risk of losing relevance in the shopping street, as the only type of store shows a year-on-year decline. & # 39;
The ONS figures contrast with less positive findings from the closely followed KPMG-BRC retail sales monitor.
According to the KPMG-BRC report, retail sales fell by 0.5 percent in March, noticing a & # 39; really disappointing & # 39; end of the first quarter of 2019, because the shopping public could not sustain the expenditure in the midst of the continuing Brexit uncertainty.
The BRC said today that US numbers & # 39; may not tell the whole story & # 39; because & # 39;Easter distortions are notoriously difficult to adjust seasonally & # 39 ;.
& # 39; Clearly, retail is going through a difficult year with increasing store closures and job losses, & # 39; added it.
Today's retail figures follow a series of positive economic data, including inflation figures and employment in the UK, which both impressed.
& # 39; These inspirational retail figures also contribute to what can only be described as a sound economic basis & # 39 ;, said Soloman.