By Marcus Leach

The latest Office for National Statistics (ONS) figures have shown that UK retail sales contracted in August as sales volumes were down 0.2%.

According to the ONS figures it represents that same volume of sales for August in 2010, and follows on from decreasing figures in June and July.

Figures had slipped back 0.2% in July, and 0.8% in June. August's figures had been affected by the riots that hit major cities throughout the UK the ONS said.

"There was some feedback from retailers that the August 2011 riots resulted in some stores closing early, thereby reducing their opening hours," the ONS said.

"[But] there was also feedback from some retailers that they saw increases in sales due to changes in shopping behaviour."

Rising prices meant that total value of sales in August was 4.7% higher than in August 2010, even though sales volumes were unchanged.

Earlier this week, the ONS confirmed that consumer prices inflation had risen to 4.5% in August.

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