Retail sales in the UK rose by 0.6 percent in September, compared with a downward revision to a 0.8 percent fall in August, as consumer spending, particularly on furniture and clothing increased in the month, data released by the Office for National Statistics, or ONS, showed, on Thursday.
The annual growth rate in retail sales also edged up to 2.2 percent from August’s 2.1 percent, as food-store sales, which declined 2.7 percent in August, fell at a slower rate of 0.6 percent in September. However, on a quarter-on-quarter basis, sales volumes rose by 1.5 percent -- marking the largest quarter-on-quarter rise since March 2008, before the economic slump. Analysts had expected retail sales to rise by 0.4 percent month-on-month, and by 2.1 percent annually, in September.
“Of the four main retail sectors, non-food stores and non-store retailing saw an increase in the quantity bought in September 2013 compared with September 2012, with increases of 3.6 percent and 19.1 percent respectively,” ONS said in a statement.
Meanwhile, store-price inflation showed that price increases in the retail industry continued to slow, with average prices increasing 0.9 percent annually compared with an increase of 1.6 percent in August 2013.
The retail sector accounts for about 6 percent of UK's economy, which grew 0.7 percent in the second quarter of the year.