Figures released by the British Retail Consortium and Nielsen have shown that overall shop prices fell at their fastest rate for more than six years in June, Shop prices dropped by 0.2% in June on the same month last year, marking the second consecutive month of annual deflation.
The decline was largely driven by a 1.9% fall in non-food prices as retailers cut prices of clothing, footwear, DIY and furniture in a bid to move stock after lingering cold weather this year impacted sales.
Food inflation increased by 2.7% year-on-year in June, compared to a rise of 2.4% in May, driven by slight increases in ambient and fresh food prices.
Helen Dickinson, BRC director general, said: "Shop prices fell at their fastest rate since February 2007, building on the downward trend that we saw in May. The deflation is driven entirely by non-food, a reflection that the summer sales are well underway as retailers battle it out to shift stock and compete for customer spending.
"The volatile weather also had a part to play in pushing down non-food prices. It's telling that the categories which saw some of the deepest discounting – clothing, footwear, furniture and DIY - were those whose sales were hit the hardest during the lingering cold snap.
"The signs are that retailers are continuing to read conditions well and planning their promotional activity accordingly. With the recent consumer confidence figures indicating an increased willingness to make major purchases, now is a good time to buy big-ticket items at the best possible price."
Source: British Retail Consortium