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April’s retail sales up 0.4%

The Office for National Statistics has today released Retail Sales figures for April 2012.

All retail sales values in April 2012 increased by 0.4% when compared with April 2011. This is the slowest rate of growth since January 2010 when sales values were also 0.4% higher compared with a year ago.

Sales volumes in April 2012 decreased by 1.1% when compared with April 2011. This is the largest fall in sales volume year-on-year growth since August 2011 when sales volumes fell by 1.2%.

The slow down in sales values and the contraction in sales volumes growth were driven by predominantly food stores, predominantly automotive fuel stores and textile, clothing and
footwear stores.

Amount spent in retail:

In the four week period of April 2012 the total non-seasonally adjusted value of spending in the retail sector was estimated to be £25.9 billion. This compares with £32.6 billion in the five weeks of March 2012 and £26.1 billion in the four week period of April 2011.

In April 2012 the average weekly non-seasonally adjusted value of spending in the retail sector was estimated to be £6.5 billion.

Internet Sales:

Internet average weekly sales values (non-seasonally adjusted) in April 2012 were estimated to be £489.0 million, an increase of 18.1% when compared with April 2011.

Internet sales are now estimated to account for 8.5% of all retail sales values excluding
automotive fuel.

The non-store retailing sector has the largest proportion of Internet sales in April 2012 and now accounts for 60.6% of all sales in this sector, up from 54.8% in April 2011. The food sector has the lowest proportion of Internet sales which now accounts for 3.2% in April 2012, up from 2.8% in April 2011.

The average weekly value of Internet sales in April 2012 (non-seasonally adjusted) is estimated to be £489.0 million, up from £485.4 million in March 2012.

Household Goods Stores:

Household goods stores sales volumes rose by 3.6% in April 2012 compared with April 2011, the largest rise since January 2011 (6.9%). The value of sales rose by 1.3% over the same period, the largest increase since a rise of 7.6% in January 2011. Average prices are estimated to show deflation of 1.6%, the largest fall in prices since January 2009 when prices were estimated to have fallen by 1.7%.

In April 2012 the estimated average weekly sales were £0.6 billion; of this, 5.9% of sales (£34.4 million) were made via the Internet.

For the full releases, please see the ‘Industry Articles’ section of the website:

Source: ONS

23 May 2012
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