FXStreet (Mumbai) - The Office for National Statistics (ONS) today reported British retail sales fell 0.6% in October. Economists polled by Reuters had expected a 0.5 per cent drop on the month. The biggest drop in food store sales since May 2014 led to the drop in retail sales. Department stores and clothing dragged retail sales down. Average shop prices were 3.3% lower in October than a year earlier. Retail sales volumes rose 3.8 per cent compared with a year ago, compared with a 6.2 per cent annual rise in September. Retail sales had increased 1.7% rise in September supported by the Rugby World Cup. The value of retail increased 0.5 per cent on the year, compared with a 0.2 per cent dip in spending recorded by the British Retail Consortium in October. Retail sales volumes rose 0.9 per cent in the three months to October. The retail sales deflator fell 3.3 per cent in October, compared with a 3.5 per cent drop in September. Online retail sale The ONS reported online sales in October increased by 11.2% compared to the same period in the previous year. Online retail sales association IMRG had earlier said that sales had increased by 8.9% compared with last year, lowest growth in fifteen years. According to the association, consumers postponed spending hoping to take advantage of Black Friday discount. Consumers remain upbeat despite dip in retail sales Though the dip in retail sales was steeper than expected British consumers remain upbeat. Consumer confidence has been boosted by a pick-up in wages as well as falling prices for goods in stores. Record-low interest rates that can be expected to stay unchanged till late next year, also helped in keeping confidence afloat. Chief economist at Markit, Chris Williamson believes the drop in sales in October to be "a one-off and masks a reassuringly solid underlying trend". Shopping in the run-up to Christmas is of great importance to retailers. It will thus be interesting to note the extent of Black Friday discounting offered by retailers. The retailers might also decide be less aggressive with respect to providing discount due to an already existing consumers' improved purchasing power and increased confidence. For more information, read our latest forex news.