UK retail sales decline in July, longest slide since 2011, CBI says

British retail sales have fallen for the third consecutive month this year, representing the longest period of decline since 2011, piling pressure on UK retailers.

Retail sales fell for the third consecutive month in the year to July, marking the longest period of decline since 2011, according to a recent trade survey by the Confederation of British Industry (CBI).

‘Whilst last year’s summer strength in retail sales is driving some of the comparative weakness this year, it is still hugely concerning that sales have fallen for the longest period in almost eight years,’ CBI Chief Economist Rain Newton-Smith said.

‘The UK economy has reached a fork in the road,’ she added. ‘The new Prime Minister must now do everything in his power to achieve a good Brexit deal, thus protecting jobs and our economy.’

Department stores and fashion retailers hit hardest by sales slump

Grocers were the largest positive contributor to headline sales growth this month, reversing fortunes after a large fall last month.

However, this was more than offset by declines in other categories, particularly department stores, clothing and other normal goods (e.g. jewellery, flowers), the CBI said.

Despite contributing most to retail sales growth, British supermarket chain Tesco saw its share price slide by 1.4 in July, while rival Sainsburys has seen its stock climb 2.9% higher over the same period.

Meanwhile, British fashion retailers like ASOS and Superdry, which have seen the most pronounced dip in sales in July, saw their stock fall by more than 9% and 5.5% respectively.

Practise trading UK retail stocks with an IG demo account.

UK sales growth hampered by Brexit woes

Across the economy more broadly, growth has been volatile in the first half of 2019, driven by companies’ stockpiling uncertainties ahead of previous Brexit deadlines, the CBI said.

‘We expect the economy to grow modestly further ahead, though a no-deal Brexit would likely hit activity and financial markets significantly.’


This information has been prepared by IG, a trading name of IG Markets Limited. In addition to the disclaimer below, the material on this page does not contain a record of our trading prices, or an offer of, or solicitation for, a transaction in any financial instrument. IG accepts no responsibility for any use that may be made of these comments and for any consequences that result. No representation or warranty is given as to the accuracy or completeness of this information. Consequently any person acting on it does so entirely at their own risk. Any research provided does not have regard to the specific investment objectives, financial situation and needs of any specific person who may receive it. It has not been prepared in accordance with legal requirements designed to promote the independence of investment research and as such is considered to be a marketing communication. Although we are not specifically constrained from dealing ahead of our recommendations we do not seek to take advantage of them before they are provided to our clients.

See an opportunity to trade?

Go long or short on more than 17,000 markets with IG.

Trade CFDs on our award-winning platform, with low spreads on indices, shares, commodities and more.

Live prices on most popular markets

  • Forex
  • Shares
  • Indices
liveprices.javascriptrequired
liveprices.javascriptrequired
liveprices.javascriptrequired

Prices above are subject to our website terms and agreements. All share prices are delayed by at least 20 minutes. Prices are indicative only.

You might be interested in…

Find out what charges your trades could incur with our transparent fee structure.

Discover why so many clients choose us, and what makes us a world-leading provider of CFDs.

Stay on top of upcoming market-moving events with our customisable economic calendar.