Investing.com - U.K. retail sale volumes rose to the highest level since the summer of 2012 in February, boosting optimism over the U.K.’s economic outlook, industry data showed on Tuesday.
In a report, the Confederation of British Industry said the result of its index of U.K. retailers surged by 23.0 points to a reading of 37.0 this month from 14.0 in January. Analysts had expected the index to ease up by 1.0 point to 15.0 in February.
On the index, a reading above 0.0 indicates higher sales volume, below indicates lower.
Sales volumes were strong once again among grocers, clothing and furniture & carpet retailers, but specialist food & drink recorded a fall in sales volumes for the second consecutive month.
Barry Williams, Chair of the CBI Distributive Trades Survey Panel said, “Overall sales have been remarkably resilient in the face of disruption from the exceptional weather across the U.K., which has badly affected many families and businesses.”
Following the release of that data, the pound held on to gains against the U.S. dollar, with GBP/USD advancing 0.25% to trade at 1.6695.
Meanwhile, European stock markets remained lower. London’s FTSE 100 fell 0.7%, the EURO STOXX 50 dropped 0.15%, France’s CAC 40 dipped 0.45%, while Germany''s DAX slumped 0.45%.