UK retail sales show no change in February - ONS


Adds detail and background in paragraphs 3-6

LONDON, March 22 (Reuters) - British retail sales unexpectedly held steady in February after rising by a revised 3.6% January, figures from the Office for National Statistics showed on Friday.

A Reuters poll of economists had forecast that sales volumes would fall by 0.3% on the month.

"There was growth in clothing, which rebounded after recent falls as people invested in the new season’s collections, as well as department stores," ONS senior statistician Heather Bovill, said.

"However, these were offset by falls in fuel sales, possibly affected by rising prices, and a reduction in food sales."

Compared with a year ago, sales volumes were 0.4% lower.

Sterling was little changed against the U.S. dollar immediately after the figures were released.

Bovill said the wet weather had impacted in-store sales during the month but boosted online shopping.

(Reporting by Suban Abdulla Editing by William Schomberg)


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