Third month of flat retail sales as DIY and furniture slump

theguardian | January 28, 2020

Third month of flat retail sales as DIY and furniture slump
Retailers were denied a post-election bounce in January following a slump in DIY and furniture sales, according to industry data. The CBI’s monthly distributive trends survey showed that a rise in purchases at department stores failed to offset the effects of weak demand across the high street, translating into flat sales for the third month in a row. The survey data, which follows poor official sales figures for December, also found that orders placed with suppliers fell as retailers maintained high levels of stock. Stagnating retail sales will add to the uncertainties in the wider economy, ahead of Mark Carney’s final meeting of the rate-setting monetary policy committee as governor of the Bank of England on Thursday.

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