27.10.202012:23:00UTC+00UK Retailers Expect Sales To Fall Again In November: CBI

British retailers expect sales to fall in November after reporting a sharp fall in October, the latest monthly Distributive Trades Survey from the Confederation of British Industry showed Tuesday.

The retail sales balance fell to -23 percent in October from +11 percent in September. The expected balance was +1 percent. A net 26 percent of retailers expect sales to fall again in November.

The survey showed that conditions across the retail sectors were mixed in October. Grocery volumes were flat, following five months of strong growth.

Across non-food retail categories, department stores, clothing and 'other normal goods' were among those reporting falling sales, while retailers of furniture, DIY and recreational goods reported strong growth.

Internet sales growth also picked back up to the long run average.

"The fall in retail sales in October is a warning sign of a further loss of momentum in the economy as coronavirus cases pick up and restrictions are tightened across many parts of the country," Ben Jones, CBI principal economist said.

It is no surprise that sales have dipped despite no new direct restrictions on retail in England, as the evidence from earlier in the year suggests consumers become more cautious as case numbers rise, Jones added.

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