Retail sales figures in the UK disappointed yesterday after being hit by the late timing of the bank holiday. Total UK sales were barely changed, up 0.1% compared with the same month last year, while like-for-like sales, which exclude new store space, fell 1.0%.
The bank holiday was on 31 August, but both the BRC and the Office for National Statistics judge that the month officially ended on 29 August. It means September's figures will be boosted by back-to-school purchases. So we can expect retail sales release for the next period to be a strong print.
"At this time of the year parents are busily shopping for back-to-school essentials like clothes, footwear and stationery and those sales will peak later this year," said BRC director general Helen Dickinson. "Large-ticket item categories like furniture and household appliances also experienced a decline in sales, again likely affected by the bank holiday distortion."
Economic growth in the 19 countries that make up the eurozone has been revised upwards. The second estimate of gross domestic product (GDP) for April to June put growth at 0.4%, up from the first estimate of 0.3%.
European statistics agency Eurostat also revised growth in the first quarter, from 0.4% to 0.5%. The upward revision to GDP for the first quarter is a result of the inclusion of Ireland, which had not been counted in earlier estimates. The Irish economy grew 1.4% in the first three months of 2015, compared with the previous quarter, making it the fastest-growing eurozone country.
Also on Tuesday it was announced that German imports and exports had both reached record levels. Boosted by the continuing weakness of the euro, exports rose 2.4% to €103.4bn in July, the federal statistics office estimated, after adjusting for seasonal and calendar effects. Imports also rose, but not by as much, meaning the trade surplus grew to a record €25.0bn.
09:30 - GBP: UK Manufacturing Production (July) – expected to remain unchanged at 0.2%.