We use cookies for monitoring visitor numbers only and we do not store any personal details. Learn more...

Member helpline 01738 448325

Retail sales fall as rising cost of living bites - Perthshire Chamber of Commerce

Retail sales fall as rising cost of living bites

UK retail sales dropped in March as the rising cost of living hit consumer spending, according to official data.

Online sales fell sharply as people cut down on non-essential spending, the Office for National Statistics said.

Fuel sales also dropped as people cut travel amid record petrol and diesel prices.

However, overall retail sales were still above pre-Covid levels, the ONS said.

Retail sales fell by an unexpected 1.4% in the month, and February's sales figures were also revised down.

Darren Morgan, ONS director of economic statistics, said "Online sales were hit particularly hard due to lower levels of discretionary spending.

"Fuel sales also fell substantially, with evidence suggesting some people reduced non-essential journeys, following record high petrol prices, while food sales continued to fall, dropping for the fifth consecutive month."

The cost of living crisis is being driven by surges in fuel, energy and food prices, with inflation running at 7% - its highest rate for 30 years.

Energy and fuel prices had been rising even before Russia's invasion of Ukraine as economies started to recover from the coronavirus pandemic, and the conflict has pushed up prices further.

© 2022 Perthshire Chamber of Commerce | Registered in Scotland 21856 | VAT No: 270 6586 43 | Website by Broxden