Sales on the high street were higher than a year ago in October, according to the latest monthly distributive trades survey from The Confederation of British Industry. The figure was positive for the fourth month in a row, and retailers predict a slightly faster increase in sales next month.
As in the previous month, the clothing, footwear and leather sub-sectors saw particularly rapid sales growth, whereas sales of durable household goods saw a slower increase (up by 22 percent), after four months of stronger growth.
"High-street sales in aggregate have performed well again this month, but sales of durable household goods have slowed noticeably in line with more subdued housing market activity of late," says Lai Wah Co, CBI's head of economic analysis. "Retailers expect sales growth to continue next month in the run-up to Christmas. We should also see more of a boost to sales as shoppers look to beat the New Year VAT rise, but looking beyond that, broader consumer caution may temper growth in spending into 2011."