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

UK retail sector struggled even before the health crisis

Written by:
Retail sales data for February 2020 showed the sector was already struggling before the outbreak of coronavirus in the UK.

In February, the monthly growth rate in the quantity bought fell by 0.3% following the effect of the extreme rainfalls and storms.

Figures from the Office for National Statistics (ONS) revealed that in the three months to February, the quantity bought in retail sales fell for the fourth consecutive month by 0.6%.

And when compared with February 2019, sales this year remained flat. The ONS said this is the lowest year-on-year growth rate since March 2013 at -1.6%.

While the data is largely unaffected by the developments of coronavirus, a small number of retailers suggested that online orders shipped from China were reduced.

And online sales as a proportion of all retailing was 19.6% in February 2020, up from the 19.1% reported in January 2020.

Ed Monk, associate director for personal investing at Fidelity International, said: “Clearly any data from the world pre-coronavirus has only limited value now, but today’s retail sales numbers show the sector was beginning to struggle even before the pandemic struck the UK.

“Early warning signs were reported in the period covered by these figures, but only retailers reliant on Chinese supply chains that were affected back in January. Department stores, in particular, were struggling and would now appear to be among the shops most likely to be negatively impacted by the long-term changes that could flow from the health crisis.”

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.

The savings accounts paying the most interest

If one of your jobs this month is to get your finances in order, moving your savings to a higher paying deal i...

Everything you need to know about being furloughed

Few people had heard of ‘furlough’ before March 2020, but the coronavirus pandemic thrust the idea of bein...

Coronavirus and your finances: what help can you get in the second lockdown?

News and updates on everything to do with coronavirus and your personal finances.

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.

Having a baby and your finances: seven top tips

We’re guessing the Duchess of Cambridge won’t be fretting about maternity pay or whether she’ll still be...

Protecting family wealth: 10 tips for cutting inheritance tax

Inheritance tax - sometimes known as 'death tax' - can cause even more heartache for bereaved families. But th...

Travel insurance: Five tips to ensure a successful claim

Ahead of your summer holiday, it’s important to make sure you have the right level of travel cover or you co...

Money Tips of the Week

Read previous post:
Council tax bills hiked by up to 15%

The average band D council tax in England for 2020/21 will rise by 4% but residents in Wales will see...