U.K. retailers offered further evidence on Tuesday that they may be in for a tough year.
Amid warnings that faster inflation will squeeze consumers, the British Retail Consortium said the last three months saw the first annual drop in non-food sales since 2011. Food sales increased 2 percent in the three-month period, the BRC data showed.
Official statistics also show that retail sales are falling, while consumer credit remained below its average at the start of the year, according to Bank of England data last week. Inflation picked up to 1.8 percent in January, from 1.6 percent, and is forecast to push close to 3 percent by year end, which will eat into real income growth.
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