WiredGov Newswire (news from other organisations)
Retail sales fall below seasonal norms in January - CBI
Retail sales were viewed as poor for the time of year in January, for the first time since September, according to the CBI’s latest Distributive Trades Survey – and sales are expected to remain below seasonal norms next month.
The survey of 101 firms, including 42 retailers, was conducted between 22 December and 18 January. This was a period when the UK was operating under tightened Covid restrictions amid the spread of the Omicron wave (notably including work from home guidance).
Sales grew at an above average pace in the year to January, but this compares sales this month with January 2021, when COVID restrictions required non-essential retail stores to close across the UK.
Growth in orders placed with suppliers eased markedly, despite this base effect. Sales volumes are expected to grow at a slightly slower pace in the year to February, while the pace of orders growth is expected to accelerate.
Internet sales were broadly flat in the year to January and are expected to remain broadly flat in the year to February.
Meanwhile in other parts of the distribution sector, both wholesalers and motor traders reported sales above seasonal norms – and expect this trend to continue next month.
Across the distribution sector, stock volumes in relation to expected sales were seen as too low, after being broadly adequate last month, with relative stock levels seen as too low in each of the three main sectors. Relative stocks are expected to remain too low again in February.
Ben Jones, Lead Economist at the CBI, yesterday said:
“It was not surprising that retail sales dropped back below seasonal norms in January, given the spread of Omicron, the reintroduction of restrictions late last year and increased consumer caution.
“Even as cases fall and Omicron-related restrictions are rowed back, retailers will be looking to the year ahead with a degree of concern. The sector faces an inflation double whammy, as rising energy and transport costs erode households’ spending power and retailers’ own costs continue to mount.
“It is vital that the Government comes forward with measures to protect the most vulnerable consumers, who will struggle the most with anticipated price rises.”
Key findings (all figures are weighted balances)
- Retail sales were seen as poor for the time of year in January (-23% from -2% last month) to the greatest extent since March 2021. Sales are expected to remain below seasonal norms in February (-17%).
- Retail sales grew at an above average pace in the year to January (+28% from +8%), and are expected to grow at a slightly slower pace in the year to February (+24%).
- Growth in orders placed with suppliers eased sharply in the year to January (+17% from +55%). Growth is expected to pick up again next month (+28%).
- Internet sales were broadly flat in the year to January for the second straight month (-2% from +3%) with expectations for flat growth again next month (+2%).
- Retail stocks in relation to expected sales were seen as too low in January (-11% from +20%). This was the eighth month out of the past nine that relative stock levels were too low, with expectations for this to remain the case next month (-4%).
Wholesalers and motor trade
- Wholesalers reported sales as good for the time of year for the tenth consecutive month, although to a lesser extent than December (balance of +30% from +43%). Sales are expected to remain above seasonal norms to a similar extent (+30%) in February.
- Motor traders reported sales as good for the time of year (+10% from -39%) with sales expected to be further above seasonal norms (+33%) next month.
Latest News from
WiredGov Newswire (news from other organisations)
CIPD and NHS partnership set to transform the future of 16,000 people professionals20/05/2022 14:05:00
NHS England and NHS Improvement commit to a 5-year partnership agreement today
Soaring demand to protect vulnerable children drives cost of care up by a quarter – new LGA analysis20/05/2022 13:05:00
Soaring demand to protect vulnerable children at risk of harm has seen spending to provide support increase by almost a quarter in five years, with an upcoming national care review a “once-in-a-generation” opportunity to set out long-awaited reform, councils are warning today.
Work from Home Day: homeworking has tripled since before the pandemic - TUC analysis20/05/2022 12:05:00
Today (Friday) is the 17th annual Work from Home Day, organised by Work Wise UK as part of Work Wise Week – a week of activity to promote employment practices that improve work-life balance.
Manufacturing output growth accelerates, but confidence falls further - CBI monthly Industrial Trends Survey sponsored by Accenture19/05/2022 16:05:00
UK manufacturing output grew at its fastest pace in ten months over the quarter to May.
Gender pensions gap means retired women go the equivalent of four and a half months each year without a pension – TUC19/05/2022 12:15:00
Today is ‘gender pensions gap day’ – when women pensioners start getting paid.
Don't wait until autumn to turn the page on low growth, says CBI President19/05/2022 10:15:00
In a speech to the CBI’s Annual Dinner yesterday (Wednesday) its President, Lord Bilimoria, said that with negative growth in March and forecasts of a weak outlook for the rest of 2022, the Government must act on the cost-of-living crisis and help firms to invest in uncertain times.
RoSPA launches groundbreaking ‘Falls Charity Appeal’ to prevent the hidden harm caused by falls19/05/2022 09:15:00
Fall prevention has been identified as the number one priority by the leading health and safety charity the Royal Society for the Prevention of Accidents (RoSPA). And RoSPA is now calling on businesses, business leaders and the health and safety community to use the skills they have developed in fall prevention in workplaces, to educate their employees to help prevent falls in the home.
Inflation: Families are desperate for government help with an emergency budget, says TUC18/05/2022 16:25:00
TUC General Secretary Frances O’Grady comments on today’s (Wednesday) inflation figures, which show CPI inflation rising to 9.0%.
TUC: Working people must not pay the price of government’s NI protocol “mess”18/05/2022 15:05:00
General Secretary Frances O’Grady yesterday commented on the government announcement on plans to scrap part of the Northern Ireland protocol.
The Power of Nutrition joins Soccer Aid for UNICEF, pledging to match public donations18/05/2022 13:25:00
Soccer Aid for UNICEF, taking place on Sunday 12 June at London Stadium, today announced a new partnership with charitable foundation The Power of Nutrition, who will match public donations and fundraising up to a total of £4 million.