MARKET MONITOR A graphic guide to the off-trade

09 August, 2007

A poll by the Confederation of British Industry has found that summer high street sales have not reached the highs they saw in spring, with DIY and big ticket items the hardest hit. CBI economic and fiscal policy head Doug Godden said: "The high street still saw an increase in year-on-year sales in July, but the rate of growth is below the March-to-May peak, and retailers' hopes for bullish summer sales have failed to materialise. The prognosis for the coming months is for a further, albeit modest, slowdown in sales growth, and this is starting to feed through to wholesalers too, with the survey revealing some of the weakest sales performances for 18 months. The Bank of England should stay its hand on any increase to interest rates until the full effects of recent movements emerge."

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Richard Hemming MW: beware inverse snobbery

Few things can bring communal pleasure so intimately as wine. Apart from a hot tub, perhaps. Sport can trigger mass jubilation, film gives us shared empathy, but wine has a nigh-unique ability to bestow conviviality among us through a shared bottle – which makes it especially galling that we spend so much time divided over it.

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