There is more dire economic data this morning, as retail sales fell at the fastest rate in eight months in August.
The amount of goods sold in stores and online fell 1.6% from July, according to the ONS. This fall was three times greater than expected.
Sales fell across all categories – the first time this has happened since July 2021, when the reopening of hospitality venues following Covid restrictions drove punters to restaurants and bars.
The figures are the latest sign of how soaring inflation and severe pressure on living standards are hitting consumers. It also highlights the challenge facing retailers as the key Christmas period approaches.
5 things to start your day
1) Why Waitrose’s claim of keeping prices low doesn’t add up Prices of basic necessities have increased by more than 30% in some cases
2) British Airways cancels one in seven flights during Queen Elizabeth II’s funeral 100 flights axed to keep skies clear as Heathrow restricts arrivals and departures on Monday
3) We don’t know how much Liz Truss’ energy bill freeze will cost, Treasury admits The Prime Minister’s budget statement, due next week, is expected to reverse tax hikes, but the costs of policies to ease bills will only cover the first few months
4) Louis Vuitton owner tells staff to take the stairs and turn down the store’s thermostats Even the French luxury retailer is cutting spending amid soaring energy costs
5) Patagonia’s Billionaire Founder Gives the Outdoors Brand The company will split into two organizations and pay dividends to ‘protect the planet’
What happened overnight
Asian markets were weaker this morning as investors braced for a US rate hike next week amid growing worries of a global recession following warnings from the World Bank and International Monetary Fund.
MSCI’s broadest index of Asia-Pacific stocks outside Japan fell 0.3% on Friday, after U.S. stocks ended the previous session with slight losses. The index is down 4.1% so far this month.
Australian shares were down 0.9pc on Friday, while Japan’s Nikkei stock index fell 1.2pc.
Hong Kong’s Hang Seng index fell 1.1pc while China’s CSI300 index fell 0.9pc.
- Economy: Inflation (EU), Retail Sales (UK, US, China), Industrial Production (China), Michigan Consumer Confidence Index (US)
- Company : No major updates planned