Financial Times

The battle between Britain’s big supermarket chains to win customers with cutthroat pricing has contributed to the first annual drop on record in the amount paid the spending in food stores, according to official data.

Food retailers are investing billions of pounds in price cuts to fend off competition from discount chains such as Aldi and Lidl, helping shoppers to spend 1.3% less in food stores during July than they did a year ago. This is the first fall since the office for National statistics began releasing retail sales data in 1989. “While the July 2013 figure was five… The fall in the amount spent in July 2014 suggests a prolonged discounting and price wars were having an effect on overall sales,” the ONS said.

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