November retail sales edge up thanks to Black Friday

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"The combination of price inflation and a return of volume growth should boost the performance of the whole grocery sector over the Christmas period", she added.

"Underlying retail sales growth remained reasonably strong in the last few months", said Rhian Murphy, ONS Senior Statistician.

United Kingdom retail sales increased 1.1% between October and November, while year-on-year growth rose 1.6%, official statistics reveal.

Retail sales in the United Kingdom rose more than expected in November, bolstering optimism over the British economy, official data showed on Thursday.

Household electrical appliances led growth in sales, partly due to reduced prices during the Black Friday sales.

However, average store prices increased by 3.1% in November compared with the same time previous year, with shoppers feeling the 3.6% rise in food prices - the highest rise since September 2013.

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'Household goods stores had a good November, with a number of businesses saying that Black Friday promotions boosted sales'.

There were price increases across all store types, in particular food stores had the largest price increase of 3.6 per cent since September 2013.

Ruth Gregory at Capital Economics said: "We would not get too carried away by the figures".

Earlier this month, the British Retail Consortium said Black Friday had failed to provide a much-needed uplift with non-food retailers such as fashion stores struggling. "So some weakening in December seems likely".

Close Brothers Retail Finance managing director Alex Marsh added: "The final run up to Christmas may prove more hard than usual for retailers as they battle low consumer confidence amid increasing inflation and a squeeze on wages". Shares in Debenhams rose 3% to 34p, while Ocado gained 3.25% to 352.7p and Domino's Pizza gained 3.85% to 334.7p.

Retail stocks received some positive momentum from the data. The FTSE 100, however, was down 0.2% at 7,481.2, while the FTSE 250 dipped 0.3% to 20,000.7.

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