Retail sales growth on the slide

24 October, 2008

Confirmation that drinks retailers are facing a tough year ahead has come with the publication of new retail sales figures from the Office of National Statistics.

The ONS figures for July to September show sales volumes for all retailers up just 0.1% compared with the previous three months.

Although sales volumes for the period were 2.3% higher than the same period in 2007, this was the lowest growth recorded since April 2006.

Sales for food stores fell 0.1%, the largest decrease since records began in 1986.

Taking August and September combined, the picture was even bleaker, with total sales volumes down 0.4%.

Today’s statistics come on the same day that official figures are due to show that the UK’s GDP has fallen for the first quarter since 1992, putting the country on the brink of recession.




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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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