Figures released by the British Retail Consortium (BRC) shows that shop price inflation has eased for the fifth month in a row.
Prices are at their lowest since last August, but in October prices were 5.2% higher down from Septembers 6.2%, the BRC’s Nielsen Shop Price Index shows.
Food inflation slowed to 8.8% from Septembers 9.9% and fresh food inflation slowed to 8.3% and non-food items dropped to 3.4%.
BRC chief executive Helen Dickinson said: “Retailers have been battling to keep prices down for their customers in the face of rising transport costs, high interest rates and other input costs.
“To keep inflation heading in the right direction, it is vital that the Government does not burden businesses with unnecessary new costs.
“Without immediate action from the Chancellor, retailers have an additional £470 million per year on their business rates bill, jeopardising the progress made. Ultimately, it’s consumers who would pay the price for the rising rates bill.”
Mike Watkins, head of retailer and business insight at NielsenIQ, said: “Inflation has helped the topline sales growth of many food retailers this year but, in reality, shoppers have been paying more and buying less.
“And the rest of the retail trade has seen less benefit due to the continued squeeze on discretionary spend.
“This time last year pressure was growing on household incomes as inflation was accelerating in fuel, energy, and food so, as inflation continues to decelerate, we now need an uptick in sentiment to help retail sales over the next eight weeks.”