Retailers expect sales to pick up next month after stagnant sales volumes in the twelve months to June, according to the CBI’s monthly Distributive Trades Survey.
Flat retail sales volumes in the year to June disappointed retailers’ hopes of modest growth but growth is expected next month, the survey revealed.
The survey of 115 retailers, wholesalers and motor traders showed 25% of firms reported that sales volumes were up on a year earlier and 24% said they were down.
But it was better than the year-on-year fall in sales experienced last month, which was the first decline since April 2012.
The CBI said orders were broadly flat on a year ago, although they surpassed expectations of a third consecutive fall. Data showed 26% of respondents placed more orders with suppliers than they did a year ago and 26% fewer.
Sales volumes were below average for the time of year in June, despite expectations they would be broadly in line with seasonal norms. Stock adequacy picked up on last month, in line with its long-run average.
Grocers’ sales rose 9% after stagnating in May when they were down 3%.
Asda chief merchandising officer for food and chair of the CBI Distributive Trades Survey Panel Barry Williams said: “Despite an improvement in British weather conditions, retailers will be disappointed they didn’t see the return to growth they expected in June – but the forecast is looking good for July when it’s hoped retail sales will return to form.
“However, with the cost of living still much higher than pay growth, family spending power is likely to remain fragile through the summer.”