UK Retail Sales Surge On Warm Weather, Royal Wedding
The combination of the warmest April on record and the Royal Wedding boosted retail sales in the U.K. to the strongest growth for that month in the better part of a decade, according to The Daily Telegraph.
The combination of the warmest April on record and the Royal Wedding boosted retail sales in the U.K. to the strongest growth for that month in the better part of a decade, according to The Daily Telegraph. On Thursday, the Office for National Statistics reported that retail sales volumes in the U.K. rose by 1.1% from March at the open of the second quarter, outpacing economists’ forecast for a 0.8% increase. The gain was the largest for April since 2002, and the ONS said, “anecdotal evidence suggests that the warm weather and the Royal Wedding contributed towards this growth.” Year-over-year, sales volumes were up 1.4%, which is the first such increase in 15 months.
Richard Hyman of Deloitte said the surge was linked to a “feel-good factor amongst consumers that hadn’t been felt for some time.” However, despite the strong headline figure, Stephen Robinson of the British Retail Consortium warned, “Much of April’s strong headline figure is down to one-off seasonal factors,” adding, “May’s growth is likely to be lower.” A separate report from Nationwide found that its index of consumer confidence was at 43 in April, which is just four points above the record low recorded in February.