Australia: Retail sales drops in February
Nominal retail sales in February declined 0.8% over the previous month in seasonally-adjusted terms, swinging from November’s 0.3% uptick. The reintroduction of Covid-19 associated restrictions in Victoria and parts of Western Australia weighed on households’ retail spending.
A notable fall in food retailing and a moderate drop in other retailing more than offset rising household goods and clothing and footwear retailing, as well as increases in sales in department stores and in cafes, restaurants and takeaway food services.
In annual terms, retail sales grew 5.2% in February, sharply down from January’s 10.3% surge. Meanwhile, annual average growth in retail sales remained stable at January’s 7.3% in February.