January retail sales figures have been published today and show a 0.7 per cent rise. Commenting, David Kern, Chief Economist at the British Chambers of Commerce (BCC), said: 

“These better than expected retail sales figures may still be distorted by heavy end of year discounting. Nevertheless, they show a possible resilience in consumer spending which needs to be nurtured. 

“The underlying recession remains serious and without continued corrective action there is a risk that any improvement will fizzle out. 

“UK retailers face a considerable regulatory burden which should be eased to ensure that any improvement in sales can be sustained.”