Source: Office for National Statistics
Great Britain retail sales declined by an 11-month high in December 2021, dragged mainly by the drop in non-food stores during the month. EWU is down 0.64%.
- Retail sales volumes for the month dropped by 3.7%, following the 1.0% growth in November and the 3.7% expansion in October.
- The latest figure reflects the steepest drop since January 2021’s -8.3%, when restrictions on non-essential retail were still under implementation.
- Non-food stores reported a 7.1% decline, with lower sales volumes recorded in all sub-sectors, including department stores, clothing stores, and household stores.
- Data indicates that sales may have been hit by the spread of the Omicron variant, which drove COVID-19 cases during the month.
- Automotive fuel sales slipped due as more workers shifted to work-from-home arrangements and reduced travel, as coronavirus cases started to climb anew.
- Online retail sales accounted for 26.6% of the total in December, up from 26.3% in November and 19.7% in February 2020 prior to the pandemic.
- Full-year sales grew 5.1%, equal to the level in 2004, and follows the 5.7% recorded in 2002.