Retail sales slump in May

Retail sales fell in May across the UK as people spent more money in hospitality rather than online and in supermarkets.

Retail sales were down by 1.4%, which is compared to the 9.2% surge in April when non-essential shops reopened.

Online shopping was also down in May, falling by 4.2%.

“Anecdotal evidence suggests the easing of hospitality restrictions had had an impact on sales as people returned to eating and drinking at locations such as restaurants and bars,” said the Office of National Statistics.

“Feedback from retailers suggested that sales were negatively affected in May by both the reopening of all retail sectors and the relaxation of hospitality restrictions, with specialist retailers of alcoholic drinks and tobacco reporting a monthly decline of 8.4%.”

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