Retail sales dip as food and fuel costs hit spending power

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Retail sales took a tumble last month as a jump in food and fuel prices squeezed consumer spending power at the start of the new year.  

The Office for National Statistics said month-on-month retail sales fell by 0.3% in January, compared to a revised 2.1% fall in December.    

Economists had been pencilling in a figure of 1% growth.