Retail news round-up on December 16, 2015: Scottish retail sales tumble 2.3% in November and UK inflation rate rises to 0.1% in November.
November retail sales in Scotland slump 2.3%
Scottish retail sales plunged 2.3% year-on-year last month despite the "Black Friday" promotional bonanza.
On a like-for-like basis, November retail sales tumbled 2.7% in the same period last year.
Consumers deserted the high street and large stores on Black Friday, according to the latest Scottish Retail Consortium/KPMG Retail Sales Monitor figures.
Total food sales slipped 2.2%, with non-food sales falling 2.3% on last year.
KPMG’s head of retail David McCorquodale said: “The evidence suggests Scottish consumers are waiting for promoted bargains before committing to spend. Most of the Black Friday activity focused on electricals and household appliances, with online channels proving most popular.”
British inflation positive in November
The inflation rate in Britain returned to positive in November for the first time in four months, driven by transport costs, alcohol and tobacco prices.
The Office for National Statistics said annual consumer price inflation edged up 0.1% last month from October's reading of -0.1%.
Clothing prices recorded an unprecedented monthly drop between October and November.
"UK inflation remained largely absent in November, and looks set to remain weaker for longer than forecasters have recently been expecting," said Chris Williamson, chief economist at data firm Markit.
"Falling prices for oil and other commodities are helping drive down companies' costs.