The wet weather and interest rate rises led to the weakest month on the high street since last November, according to the British Retail Consortium (BRC). It says that like-for-like retail sales rose by just 1.2% last month compared to a 3.4% rise in the same month last year.
The BRC says that the bad weather and pressure on disposable income is starting to take its toll. It is urging the Bank of England to “wait and see” for the next few months before increasing interest rates again.
KPMG head of retail Helen Dickinson says that sales across food and drink, clothing and footwear sectors have been disappointing compared to last July, which saw a heatwave and the football World Cup.
Dickson adds the packaged goods and clothing and footwear categories account for more than half of consumers’ spending. She days: “The only reason the overall like-for-like figures for July were not negative was due to spending levels in the remaining sectors holding up.”