China Retail March 2017


China: Growth in retail sales accelerates in March

April 17, 2017

In March, nominal retail sales in China grew 10.9% year-on-year, which was above both the 9.5% increase in the January-February period and the 9.7% increase that market analysts had expected. January-February’s print had represented the weakest growth in over a decade. The acceleration came on the back of a rebound in automobile sales and stronger sales for household appliances.

Compared to the previous month, retail sales expanded a seasonally-adjusted 0.84% in March (February: +0.96% month-on-month). Annual average growth in retail sales was stable at February’s 10.3% in March, thereby remaining at the lowest rate since April 2004.

The government set a retail sales growth target of 10.0% for this year. FocusEconomics Consensus Forecast participants expect retail sales to increase 10.2% in 2017, which is down 0.2 percentage points from last month’s estimate. In 2018, the panel foresees retail sales expanding 10.1%.

Author: Ricard Torné, Lead Economist

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China Retail Chart

China Retail March 2017 0

Note: Month-on-month changes of seasonally adjusted nominal retail sales index and year-on-year variation in %. Owing to seasonal factors related to the Lunar New Year, annual figures for January and February are reported together.
Source: National Bureau of Statistics of China (NBS) and FocusEconomics calculations.

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