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Record fall for retail sales in April

British retail sales fell by a record 18.1% in April as shops were shuttered under lockdown restrictions, Office for National Statistics data shows.

The drop in April was on top of a 5.2% fall in March, when non-essential stores were first ordered to close.

The volume of clothing sales sold in April plummeted by 50% compared with March, which had already fallen by 34.9% on the previous month.

Online spending soared to the highest proportion on record in April at 30.7% of overall retail sales, compared with 19.1% in the same month last year.

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