April 2, 2013 / 11:09 PM / 5 years ago

UK shop price inflation picks up in March - BRC

LONDON (Reuters) - British shop price inflation accelerated last month, as prices of goods other than food rose for the first time in 15 months indicating a better mood among shoppers, the British Retail Consortium said on Wednesday.

Pat Brown, a 60 year-old hat vendor who has lived in London for forty five years, poses for a picture in Brixton, London, May 22, 2012. REUTERS/Stefan Wermuth

BRC Director General Helen Dickinson said: ”Non-food prices have edged into inflationary territory for the first time in 15 months... It bears out anecdotal evidence that demand is strengthening and promotions are less widespread than last year.

”I would expect food inflation to remain fairly steady in the medium term.

”Total inflation is at its highest rate since December, again reflecting that many retailers went into the new year with less stock to clear, so discounting is less extensive compared with 2012.

“Next month will be the one to watch. It’ll be interesting to see if the prolonged unseasonably cold and wet weather leads to deeper discounting on spring lines for some retailers.”

Reporting by Olesya Dmitracova; editing by Ron Askew

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