Shops predict a bounce in sales for this summer

 
Tim Wallace
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THE SLUMP in British retail is over and the sector should bounce back in the coming months, according to an industry survey published yesterday.

In April and May the number of firms reporting falling sales outweighed those reporting rising sales, but that drop came to an end in June, according to the Confederation of British Industry’s distributive trades study.

And firms expect sales to pick back up again in July – 32 per cent expect an improvement next month, outweighing the 19 per cent who predict another fall in sales, leaving a positive net balance of 13 per cent.

“The recent improvement in a wide range of indicators have raised hopes that the UK economy may finally be moving to a firmer footing,” said IHS Global Insight economist Howard Archer, although he warned that “purchasing power is [still] constrained by earnings growth currently running well below the inflation rate.”