Shop prices decrease again in October

Shop price deflation decelerated to 0.4% in October from -0.6% in September, according to new figures from the British Retail Consortium (BRC).

The results are below the 12- and six-month average price changes of 0.2% and -0.2%, respectively.

Additionally, non-Food deflation decelerated to 1.5% in October, from -1.7% in September, and food inflation accelerated to 1.6% in October from 1.1% in September.

Helen Dickinson, chief executive of the BRC, said consumers “continue to benefit” from lower shop prices, with October being the fifth consecutive month of decline.

She added the year has seen “relatively weak” sales, and notes that retailers hope that Black Friday and Christmas will “reverse this trend with the help of lower prices”.

Dickinson said: “Rising global food prices and the higher oil prices from earlier this year will increase costs for retailers. These factors comes as the industry struggles with the burden of public policy costs, such as business rates, which is weighing heavily on the industry and keeping margins at record lows.

“Furthermore, while the threat of a no-deal Brexit has been pushed back, it has not gone away. To remove this threat, and the price rises that would result, the government must secure an agreement with the EU as soon as possible to give consumers and retailers the certainty they need.”

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