Total retail sales in the UK have grown by 1.5% in July 2023, according to data from the British Retail Consortium (BRC)-KPMG Retail Sales Monitor.

The figure is lower than the three-month average growth of 3.5% and the 12-month average growth of 3.9%.

During the month, like-for-like (LFL) retail sales in the UK rose by 1.8% compared to a growth of 1.6% in the same period a year ago.

Over the three months to July, food sales increased by 8.4% and 8.7% on a total and LFL basis, respectively. It is above the 12-month total average growth of 7.8%.

Non-food sales for the three months to July declined by 0.5% on a total basis and 0.8% on an LFL basis.

During this period, in-store non-food sales grew 1.2% on a total basis and 0.8% on an LFL basis since July 2022. Meanwhile, online non-food sales declined by 6.9% in July, compared to a drop of 3.9% in the same period a year ago.

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By GlobalData

The proportion of online purchases of non-food items dropped to 34.7% in July 2023 from 35.3% in July 2022.

BRC chief executive Helen Dickinson said: “The slowing pace of retail price inflation fed through into slower sales this July. Spend was further depressed by the damp weather, which did no favours to sales of clothing and other seasonal goods. Online spending was down again year on year as the post Covid trend back to stores continued, leading to the lowest proportion of non-food sales online since the pandemic began. 

“While consumer confidence is generally improving, it remains below longer term levels. And with last week’s rise in interest rates pushing mortgage rates up ever higher, the Government must get a handle on the economy, offering a solution to languishing GDP growth in a way that supports both households and businesses. Only by creating the economic conditions for future growth, will we see a meaningful improvement in the outlook.”

Recently, data from the BRC and Sensormatic IQ revealed that total retail footfall in the UK increased by 1.8% last month on a year-on-year basis (YoY).