Retail sales drop and other Coronavirus news

Gathering info for you in one place:



Not much of a surprise with most shops unable to open but anyway, here’s the info from the Office for National Statistics:

The record fall in retail sales picked up speed in April 2020, with sales volumes dropping by 18.1% compared with 5.2% in March 2020.

According to the latest data, 14.3% of stores reported zero-turnover in April.

Clothing sales declined by more than half (50.2%), having already fallen by 34.9% in the previous month. Meanwhile, sales at food stores also declined (by 4.1%), following an initial rise in March as lockdown measures were introduced.

Non-store retailing and alcohol stores (off-licences) were the only sectors to record growth in April, at 18.0% and 2.3% respectively.

The lockdown continued to affect people’s buying habits, with the proportion spent online rising again to a new record of 30.7%.

Other news in figures:

  • Provisional figures for April 2020 show that the UK public sector borrowed £62.1 billion, almost as much as in the whole of the last financial year (£62.7 billion).
  • The most common impact of the coronavirus (COVID-19) on people’s lives between 14 and 17 May 2020 was a lack of freedom and independence, with nearly two in three adults (65%) saying this was impacting them.
  • An estimated average of 61,000 people in English households were being newly infected with the coronavirus (COVID-19) per week – an incidence rate of 0.11 new infections per 100 people.
  • There were an estimated 23.7 million passenger arrivals (including returning UK residents) in January to March 2020 (fewer than normal).
  • Inflation has dropped to its lowest level in almost four years largely because of falling energy and fuel pump prices.
  • With few homeworking opportunities, many businesses in industries such as restaurants and entertainment have furloughed staff and paused operations. (11%)
  • As of 9 am on 21 May, there have been 3,090,566 tests, with 128,340 tests on 20 May. 2,064,329 people have been tested, of which 250,908 tested positive.
  • As of 5 pm on 20 May, of those tested positive for coronavirus in the UK, 36,042 have died. This new figure includes deaths in all settings, not just in hospitals. The equivalent figure under the old measure would have been 29,221.


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