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Apparel & footwear retail sales up in March

03
May '07
The Census and Statistics Department (C&SD) released the latest figures on retail sales May 3.

The value of total retail sales in March 2007, provisionally estimated at $18.9 billion, increased by 5.0% over a year earlier. After netting out the effect of price changes over the same period, the volume of total retail sales increased by 3.5% in March 2007 over a year earlier.

The revised estimate of the value of total retail sales in February 2007, at $20.8 billion, increased by 28.6% over February 2006, while the volume of total retail sales increased by 25.2%. This came after a decrease of 1.5% in value or 4.9% in volume in January.

It should be noted, however, that retail sales tend to show greater volatility in the first two months of a year because of the effect of the timing of the Lunar New Year. For the first two months of 2007 combined, retail sales increased by 11.6% in value or 8.1% in volume from a year earlier.

Taking the first quarter of 2007 together, total retail sales increased by 9.4% in value or 6.6% in volume over the same period a year earlier.

Analysed by type of retail outlet and comparing March 2007 with March 2006. This was followed by sales of wearing apparel (+9.1% in volume); commodities in department stores (+7.7%); footwear, allied products and other clothing accessories (+7.6%); miscellaneous consumer goods (+4.4%); furniture and fixtures (+0.5%).

On the other hand, the volume of sales of miscellaneous consumer durable goods decreased by 3.6% respectively in March 2007 compared with a year earlier, while the volume of sales of commodities in supermarkets and of jewellery, watches and clocks, and valuable gifts also decreased, by 2.7% and 1.7% respectively.

Based on the seasonally adjusted series, the volume of total retail sales increased by 1.9% in the first quarter of 2007 compared with the preceding quarter.


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