The Chief Executive of the British Retail Consortium (BRC) has responded to the latest ONS Retail Sales Index figures.
Helen Dickinson said, “Households reined in spending as the cost-of-living crunch continued to squeeze consumer demand. Many customers are buying down, particularly with food, choosing value range items where they might previously have bought premium goods.
'High value items, such as furniture and white goods, were also impacted as shoppers reconsidered major purchases during this difficult time.
“Higher operational and input costs have filtered through to prices, meaning both retailers and their customers are in for hard times ahead.
'Retailers are doing what they can to support households by absorbing as much of the costs as possible, expanding their value ranges, offering discounts for some vulnerable' groups, and investing in their own supply chains to reduce future costs.'
Helen concluded, 'If costs continue to spiral, Government will need to be ready to support struggling households.”