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10 June 2016

Retailers ‘facing financial winter’

High street sales are down again, according to a new report which says retail sector spending is being held back by financial pressures and concern about the outcome of the EU referendum.

Figures from accountancy company BDO show that overall high street sales in May were 1.9% down compared to the corresponding month last year.

The report says that pressure on families' finances and doubts surrounding this month's EU referendum were among the factors affecting the confidence of consumers.

With the exception of January, the BDO High Street Sales Tracker has now indicated negative growth every month since last October.

The latest figures come a month after it recorded the biggest drop in overall year-on-year sales since the recession was at its worst.

They have left the report describing the high street as being in the "grip of a deep financial winter" despite the onset of summer.

And it says the figures would have been even worse had it not been for a flurry of promotions in late May.

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