Retail news round-up on November 10, 2015: SNP votes against Sunday trading liberalisation and retail sales growth cools in October.

Scottish nationalists to oppose changes to Sunday trading rules

The Scottish National Party (SNP) is poised to block the Government’s plans to liberalise Sunday trading laws in England and Wales.

The SNP has decided to vote against the measure on the grounds that longer trading hours could drive down the wages of Scottish workers who enjoy a special Sunday premium.

SNP’s Westminster leader Angus Robertson said: “SNP MPs could hold the balance of power in the House of Commons on Sunday shopping and we will not undermine shop workers. This legislation will impact on workers in Scotland and elsewhere in the UK and no pay safeguards have been offered by the Westminster government.

”The SNP will continue to work with the representatives of shop workers and we will oppose the Tory proposals.”

Retail sales down 0.9% in October

UK retail sales in October dropped 0.2% on a like-for-like basis compared with the same month last year.

The total retail sales value inched up 0.9% year on year last month, according to the British Retail Consortium.

The consortium said the slowdown could have been partly due to shoppers hoping to grab Black Friday deals at the end of November.

Meanwhile, clothing and furniture sales were bright spots last month.

“October was a somewhat disappointing month overall for retailers, with just 0.9% growth, slower than the three and twelve-month averages,” BRC’s chief executive Helen Dickinson said.