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Riots hit sales in UK shops.

RETAIL sales volumes fell 0.2% in August, official figures said, as violent riots earlier in the month triggered store closures across the country.

The Office for National Statistics (ONS) said while it was impossible to quantify, there was clear evidence the widespread looting in early August had an impact on retail trade.

However, some stores believed they benefited from the riots as consumers altered their shopping behaviour by seeking alternatives to shops which had closed and moved to avoid the violence. The shocking scenes, which led to thousands of arrests across Britain's biggest cities, added to the wider malaise swamping the retail sector, which has been knocked sideways by a consumer spending squeeze, driven by high prices and low wages.

The drop in August sales volumes, compared with 0.2% growth in July, was driven by most retail sectors with the greatest decrease in department stores.
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Publication:Huddersfield Daily Examiner (Huddersfield, England)
Date:Sep 16, 2011
Words:147
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