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United Kingdom Retail March 2024

United Kingdom: Retail sales growth remains broadly unchanged in March

Retail sales increased 0.1% in month-on-month seasonally adjusted terms in March, which followed February’s 0.1% increase and was below market expectations of a 0.3% rise. Increases in sales of automotive fuel and non-food stores were offset by declines in food stores and non-store retailers,

On an annual basis, retail sales rose 0.8% in March (February: -0.3% yoy), the best result since March 2022. Moreover, the trend improved, with the annual average variation of retail sales coming in at minus 1.5% in March, up from February’s minus 2.0%.

Looking at the data for Q1 as a whole, retail sales expanded relative to Q4, which chimes with our panelists’ forecasts of a return to private consumption growth in the first quarter following Q4’s contraction.

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