UK households cut back as Brexit effect on pound hits living costs

Reports show drop in retail sales, a slowdown in services sector and fall new car sales in May

British households are cutting back as the Brexit effect on the pound continues to raise living costs, according to a clutch of reports that show shops, car dealerships and other consumer-facing businesses coming under pressure last month.

Uncertainty about the outcome of Thursday’s election was also cited as a factor as the reports showed a drop in retail sales, a slowdown for the vast services sector and a fall in new car sales last month.

Related: Energy price rises help drive UK inflation up to 2.7%

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Average UK rents fall for first time in more than seven years

London sees biggest drop, as property prices also slide for third month in a row

Average UK rents have fallen for the first time in more than seven years, with London seeing the biggest decline, according to new data.

The slowdown in the rental sector mirrors a similar picture in the housing market, with figures showing that property prices have fallen for the third month in a row.

Related: Yes, house prices are falling: but they probably won’t fall quickly

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