Retail prices are rising back to ‘normal’, says British Retail Consortium

Retail price increases have returned to ‘normal levels’ as the cost of furniture, televisions and other non-food items have fallen, according to a British retail association.

According to the British Retail Consortium (BRC) and research firm NielsenIQ, prices rose 0.6% year-on-year in May, compared to 0.8% in the previous month.

The figures also showed that food inflation fell for the thirteenth month in a row to 3.2%.

Household budgets have come under pressure as prices soared in the wake of the pandemic and the war in Ukraine pushed up energy costs.

The ease of the increase in retail prices “was helped by the slowing of food inflation, with fresh food inflation falling to its lowest level since November 2021,” said Helen Dickinson, chief executive of the BRC.

While the cost of food has continued to rise, albeit at a slower pace, the prices of non-food items have fallen, the BRC said.

This included furniture, TVs and audio equipment, the prices of which were reportedly reduced by retailers ahead of the Euros football tournament.

Unusually wet weather is also credited with helping lower prices.

“The unusual weather has dampened retail sales, so it appears lower prices will continue and promotional activities are likely to increase demand,” said Mike Watkins, head of retailer and business insight at NielsenIQ.

Inflation is the increase in the price of something over time.

For example, if a bottle of milk costs €1, but a year later it costs €1.05, then the annual milk inflation is 5%.

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