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Retail sales growth hits 14-year high

UK retail sales for October grew at the fastest rate since 2002. The quantity bought is up 7.4% compared with this time last year, boosted by sales of cold weather clothing.

A report from the Office for National Statistics (ONS) found that retail sales had increased 1.9% in October 2016, compared with the month before. The rise was attributed to increased clothing sales in the cold weather.

The value of sales for October also rose, up 2.1% on September 2016, and up 6.6% year on year. Clothing, textile and footwear retailers had a 5.2% increase in sales year-on-year, which contributed the largest area of growth.

Commenting on the rise, Kate Davies, a senior statistician at the ONS, said: “Cooler temperatures in October boosted clothing sales as shoppers took their cue to purchase winter clothing, while the supermarkets benefited from Halloween. This has also coincided with the strongest growth in internet sales seen for five years.”

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