Shop prices dropped 1.8% in October as clothing, books and DIY products experienced the deepest levels of deflation owing to low commodity prices.

Non-food prices dropped 2.7% year on year in the month as food fell 0.4%, according to the BRC-Nielsen Shop Price Index.

The 1.8% fall in overall price deflation represented the 30th consecutive month of shop price deflation and was a slight slowdown in deflation from the previous months. Prices fell 1.8% in September, following a 0.5% fall in food and a 2.9% fall in non-food.

BRC chief executive Helen Dickinson said: “From a big picture perspective, retailers will be considering the implications of the recent Government announcements – implementing the national living wage, the apprenticeship levy and the increasing cost of business rates requires retailers to find more than £14bn of efficiency improvements over the next five years.

“In a competitive, deflationary environment where jobs and growth in communities up and down the country are vital, the industry’s ability to play its part in investing in the living wage is being hindered by the business rates system.”