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UK consumer confidence hits record low, as people cut back on food shopping – business live

Retail sales across Britain dropped in May and consumer morale continues to slide

  • Larry Elliott: Retailers face long difficult summer, with consumer confidence at rock bottom
  • UK consumers are gloomier than at height of pandemic or in 2008 financial crisis
  • Petrol and diesel prices at fresh records
  • Retail sales fell in May as people cut back on food shopping

UK retail sales (excluding fuel) are down by roughly 4% since last October, reports James Smith, economist at ING.

That tumble is due to the cost of living squeeze and a more general rotation from goods to services spending as the Covid-19 lockdowns have been eased, he says.

The cost of living squeeze is likely to cause a further hit to demand over the coming months.

Confidence fell to another all-time low in June, despite new government support measures. The near-10% rise in petrol/diesel prices over the past month has dealt another blow to finances.

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