Photo: REUTERS/Peter Summers

Latest figures from the British Retail Consortium (BRC) shows the continued downward spiral of the retail sales into March with total sales falling 0.5 percent compared to the same month last year.

Like for like sales fared worse, falling by 1.1 percent year on year.

Helen Dickinson, chief executive of the BRC said the Brexit uncertainty is stopping consumers from splashing out.

“Brexit continues to feed the uncertainty among consumers. For the sake of everyone, MPs must rally behind a plan of action that avoids no deal – and quickly – or it will be ordinary families who suffer as a result of higher prices and less choice on the shelves.”

More than a week after Britain was originally supposed to have left the EU, nothing is resolved as Prime Minister Theresa May battles to get a divorce deal ratified by a profoundly divided parliament.

Food sales have seen growth of 1.3 percent in first quarter of 2019 on a total basis. The year on year fall is mainly caused by the timing of Easter.

“The underlying trend has been generally flat, indicating there has not been a high level of stock building by households,” said Susan Barratt, chief executive of IGD.

“Although 62 per cent of shoppers are worried about the economy this is the same number as in summer last year. For the great majority, it has been food shopping as usual.”