Insight Report

December 2018 UK Retail Sales and Christmas Trading Wrap-Up: Solid Total Growth in Line with FGRT Forecast, but Gains Not Evenly Distributed

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Coresight Research

Key Points

Coresight Research’s monthly reports keep you up to date on US and UK retail sales, US retail traffic and in-store metrics, selected US retailers’ same-store sales and key global consumer indicators. Click here to view our full collection of Monthly Reports.

Our monthly UK Retail Sales Report reviews the latest sector data published by the Office for National Statistics (ONS).

Highlights from our December UK Retail Sales Report:

  • UK November and December retail sales growth came in at a robust 4.6% year over year. This was in line with FGRT’s holiday forecast calling for growth of approximately 5%.
  • Total growth was supported by shop-price inflation of 2.9% in December and 3.0% in November.
  • Black Friday appeared to pull discretionary sales from October and December into November.
  • Trading updates from retailers show that sales gains were not evenly distributed.
  • Christmas trading updates suggest that structural winners in discount retail and e-commerce are accelerating their gains even as they mature, a process that should, in theory, prompt a slowing of growth.

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