top of page
Search

December 2022 UK Retail Sector Sales Report - Grow'

The Office of National Statistics (ONS) in the United Kingdom has released a bulletin on the state of non-food stores sales in December 2022.

The report states that the total non-food stores sales volumes (which include department, clothing, household, and other non-food stores) declined by 2.1% over the month. Retailers have reported that consumers are cutting back on spending due to increased prices and affordability concerns.


The ONS conducted a public opinion and social trends bulletin covering the period from 7 to 18 December and found that 60% of adults surveyed said they were planning to cut back on the amount they spent on Christmas in 2022 compared to the previous year. The most common ways they planned to do so were by buying fewer presents (79%) and buying less expensive presents (73%). The estimates were consistent in the public opinion and social trends bulletin for the period from 21 December to 8 January 2023, published on 13 January 2023.


Within non-food stores, the sub-sector of other non-food stores reported a monthly decline in sales volumes of 6.2% due to strong declines in cosmetics stores, sports equipment stores, games and toys stores, and watches and jewellery stores. Department stores sales volumes fell by 3.1% in December 2022, after a rise of 2.1% in November. Retailers reported that longer Black Friday sales contributed to the increase in November.


On the other hand, clothing stores sales volumes increased by 1.0% in December 2022, while household goods stores (such as furniture stores) rose by 1.5% over the month.


In conclusion, the ONS report indicates a decline in the total non-food stores sales volumes in December 2022. The decline was driven by a decrease in the volume of sales in other non-food stores, while department stores and cosmetics stores saw a significant drop. The survey conducted by the ONS suggests that consumers are cutting back on spending during the Christmas season, with a majority of respondents saying they will buy fewer presents or less expensive presents. However, clothing stores and household goods stores saw an increase in sales volumes over the month.


Overall Retail Sales in December


Retail sales volumes fell by 1.0% in December, following a decline of 0.5% in November 2022 (revised from a decline of 0.4%). The values of retail sales, unadjusted for price changes, decreased by 1.2% in December 2022, after a rise of 0.5% in November 2022.

When compared to the pre-COVID-19 levels in February 2020, the total retail sales were 13.6% higher in value terms, but volumes were 1.7% lower. This suggests that although the value of retail sales has increased, the volume of goods sold has not returned to pre-pandemic levels.


The report also states that when compared to the same period a year earlier, retail sales volumes declined by 5.7% in the three months to December 2022, while sales values rose by 4.5%. This indicates that although the value of retail sales has increased year-over-year, the volume of goods sold has decreased.


The reporting period for the bulletin covers 27 November to 31 December 2022, which includes Cyber Monday on 28 November. The ONS estimates are seasonally adjusted, taking into account seasonal effects such as Cyber Monday and Christmas spending.


In conclusion, the bulletin from the ONS suggests a decline in the volume of retail sales in December 2022, despite an increase in the value of retail sales. The decrease in the volume of goods sold, combined with the increase in value, indicates a shift in consumer spending towards higher-priced items. The seasonal adjustment of the data accounts for the effects of Cyber Monday and Christmas spending.


Online Retail


For Online Sales the report shows that the proportion of money spent online, as indicated by the percentage weights, gives an insight into the distribution of online spending across various industries. For example, in 2021, 7.6 pence in every pound spent online was spent in department stores.


The ONS report indicates that online spending values declined by 2.9% in December 2022, due to monthly decreases across all industries except for household goods and food stores. The proportion of online sales fell to 25.4% in December 2022 from 25.9% in November. Retailers have reported that the Royal Mail strikes led to consumers shopping in stores more.


Despite the decline in December, the proportion of retail sales taking place online remains higher than the pre-COVID-19 pandemic levels (19.8% in February 2020). This highlights the ongoing trend of consumers shifting towards online shopping, even with the recent decline.


In conclusion, the ONS report on online retail sales in December 2022 indicates a decrease in online spending values, with the proportion of online sales falling to 25.4%. However, the proportion of retail sales taking place online remains higher than the pre-pandemic levels, reflecting the ongoing trend of consumers shifting towards online shopping. The decline in December is believed to have been caused by the Royal Mail strikes, leading to an increase in in-store shopping.


https://www.ons.gov.uk/businessindustryandtrade/retailindustry/bulletins/retailsales/december2022



6 views0 comments
Post: Blog2_Post
bottom of page