CONSUMERS have continued spending despite rising interest rates, prompting fears that the Bank of England will have to raise rates to 6%. Financial Times. The Independent. Daily Telegraph

British Retail Consortium data show sales on the high street were up 5.1% in the month compared with a year ago. Like-for-like sales rose 3%.

The consortium said sales figures were distorted by the torrential rain in June, which hit clothing, footwear, DIY and gardening, but drove up footfall in department stores.

It added that much of the gains in homeware and furniture sales were driven by heavy discounts. Food sales slowed compared with last year when they were boosted by the World Cup.