Prices up despite early Christmas sales

PUBLISHED: 00:00 04 January 2019

Christmas shoppers saw prices rise even though some sales started early

Christmas shoppers saw prices rise even though some sales started early PHOTO BY SIMON FINLAY

Shoppers struggled to bag a bargain Christmas this year with prices rising at their highest rate since 2013.

Many household-name retailers tempted East Anglia’s Christmas shoppers by slapping deep discounts on products in a bid to kick-start the festive period.

But overall figures from the BRC-Nielsen Shop Price Index show inflation accelerated to 0.3% last month compared to a year ago, and up from 0.1% in November.

MORE: Bumper Christmas Eve brings John Lewis festive joy

This is the fourth month of inflation in five years and the highest rate since April 2013.

The increase was driven by slowing deflation in general merchandise and the rising cost of ambient food, which saw prices increase to 2.3% in December, up from 2.1% in November.

Non-food deflation decelerated to 0.4% from 0.8% in November, the lowest rate of decline since March 2013.

The BRC said that this is the result of the collapse in the pound following the Brexit vote feeding through and a change in the promotional strategies deployed by retailers.

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