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UK retail sales fall on an annual basis

It has been revealed that total retail sales in the UK fell by 0.1% in the 12 months to the end of October but the figure was even worse at 2.2% after stripping out the impact of new store sales. This is the first time that UK sales have fallen on an annual basis from more than three years and fully reflects the serious downturn in the UK retail market is currently experiencing.

We have seen figures from Marks & Spencer, John Lewis and Next suggesting that cost on the high street are set to rise at a time when sales have never been under more pressure. Import costs are likely to hit retailers towards the end of 2008 and early 2009 with many predicting serious financial consequences for some of the weaker players in the market.

These retail figures are worse than many had forecast and do not bode well for the immediate future on the UK high should. Even the 1.5% reduction in the base rate and rumoured tax cuts will have a very limited impact in the short term for their medium term and long term input will be greatly received.

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