Upturn in retail sales growth
Spending on the High Street continues to be driven by discounting. Retail sales volume rose by 0.6% last month, ahead of expectations. All but one sector saw an increase over the month. Less volatile quarterly growth saw sales up by 1.7% in the three months to September. Consumer confidence fell marginally last month, despite reasonably strong sales growth. Interest rates remain at 5.75%. The Consumer Prices Index also remained unchanged at 1.8%, as food prices were offset by falling energy bills.