Nov Retail Sales Drop 23.6%

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The value of total retail sales in November, provisionally estimated at $30 billion, fell 23.6% compared with the same month in 2018, the Census & Statistics Department announced today.


After netting out the effect of price changes over the same period, the volume of total retail sales decreased 25.4% year-on-year.


The value of sales of electrical goods and other consumer durable goods, not elsewhere classified decreased 18.6%.


This was followed by commodities in department stores (-32.9% in value); jewellery, watches and clocks, and valuable gifts (-43.5%); food, alcoholic drinks and tobacco (-11%); wearing apparel (-31.9%); medicines and cosmetics (-33.4%); other consumer goods, not elsewhere classified (-18.6%); motor vehicles and parts (-11.9%); furniture and fixtures (-12.2%); footwear, allied products and other clothing accessories (-31.5%); books, newspapers, stationery and gifts (-20.8%); Chinese drugs and herbs (-23.4%); and optical shops (-27.9%).


The value of commodities in supermarkets increased by 2.6% for the period, followed by fuels that rose 11.2%.


Retail sales continued to fall sharply in November as the local social incidents turned extremely violent, causing very severe disruptions to tourism and consumption-related activities and further dampening consumption sentiment, the Government said.


Noting that the near-term outlook for the retail trade hinges on how the local social incidents will evolve, it added that putting an end to violence and restoring social order are essential to the recovery of the retail trade and the economy as a whole.