You are here: Home - Saving & Banking - News -

Small uptick in December retail sales but 2020 disappoints

0
Written by:
22/01/2021
Retail sales volumes increased 0.3% in December as shoppers were given a small window ahead of Christmas lockdown restrictions, official figures reveal.

Retailers said enforced closures later in the month affected turnover, though not to the same extent as witnessed in November.

But, Christmas purchases through click and collect and online sales helped to lessen the impact, they reported to the Office for National Statistics (ONS).

Clothing stores reported strong monthly growth of 21.5%, rebounding from a large fall (-19.6%) recorded in November when they were closed due to coronavirus restrictions.

Despite the monthly recovery, sales in the sector are still 14.2% lower than December 2019 and continue to remain at a lower level than before the pandemic struck.

Food stores reported a monthly fall of 3.4% in December after benefitting from November’s curbs to the hospitality and non-essential sector.

However, year-on-year, food stores saw strong annual growth of 4.4%, while the year-on-year growth rate in the volume of retail sales increased by 2.9% when compared with December 2019.

Non-store retailers reported the largest year-on-year growth at 43.5%. Total online retailing values increased by 46.1% in 2020 when compared with 2019, the highest annual growth reported since 2008.

‘Most digital Christmas ever’

Ian Geddes, head of retail at Deloitte, said: “Despite the challenges that 2020 brought, retail overall has shown some resilience in the final month of the year. Strong performance in grocery and record-breaking online sales for non-food meant that Christmas 2020 was the most digital ever.

“Having entered 2021 under renewed lockdown restrictions, retailers will be looking to consumer behaviours during the pandemic to predict which new trends are likely to emerge, and which will carry over.”

Geddes added: “For now, pent-up demand is likely to see shoppers out in force once restrictions lift, as we saw in summer at the end of the first lockdown. Crucially, the reopening of the high street will this time coincide with the ongoing vaccine rollout, which should boost consumer confidence and see them return to stores once more.”

There are 0 Comment(s)

If you wish to comment without signing in, click your cursor in the top box and tick the 'Sign in as a guest' box at the bottom.

Flight cancelled or delayed? Your rights explained

With no sign of the problems in UK aviation easing over the peak summer period, many will worry whether holida...

Rail strikes: Your travel and refund rights

Thousands of railway workers will strike across three days this week, grinding much of the transport system to...

How your monthly bills could rise as the base rate reaches 1.25%

The Bank of England has raised the base rate to 1.25% as predicted – the fifth consecutive rise in just six ...

What will happen if rates change

How your finances will be impacted by a rise in interest rates.

Regular Savings Calculator

Small regular contributions can build up nicely over time.

Online Savings Calculator

Work out how your online savings can build over time.

DIY investors: 10 common mistakes to avoid

For those without the help and experience of an adviser, here are 10 common DIY investor mistakes to avoid.

Mortgage down-valuations: Tips to avoid pulling out of a house sale

Down-valuations are on the rise. So, what does it mean for home buyers, and what can you do?

Five tips for surviving a bear market mauling

The S&P 500 has slipped into bear market territory and for UK investors, the FTSE 250 is also on the edge. Her...

Money Tips of the Week