Business

UK retail sales fall in May as cost of living rises

UK retail sales fell in May on the back of lower food sales, another sign that consumers are cutting back on spending amid mounting strains on household finances.

Retail sales fell 0.5% in May compared to April, the third drop in four months, data from the Bureau for National Statistics showed on Friday. Economists polled by the Wall Street Journal were forecasting a 0.7% decline in retail sales.

In April, retail sales rose a revised 0.4%, down from the previously reported 1.4% increase.

The decline in sales volumes was driven by grocery stores, where sales fell 1.6% month-on-month. Reduced spending at grocery stores appeared to be linked to the impact of rising food prices and the cost of living, the ONS said.

Write to Xavier Fontdegloria at xavier.fontdegloria@wsj.com

https://www.marketwatch.com/story/uk-retail-sales-fell-in-may-amid-rising-cost-of-living-271656051166?rss=1&siteid=rss UK retail sales fall in May as cost of living rises

Brian Lowry

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