China Retail June 2019


China: Retail sales expand at fastest pace in 15 months in June

July 15, 2019

In June, nominal retail sales grew 9.8% on an annual basis, marking the fastest acceleration in over one year. The print was above both the 8.6% increase in May and market expectations of an 8.5% rise.

June’s acceleration mostly reflected a surge in auto sales as well as stronger sales of food and household appliances. About the surge in car sales, Yi David Wang, head of China economics at Credit Suisse, comments that:

“The uptick in retail sales appears to be driven by auto sales, which likely resulted from the slash in sales price as dealers attempt to clear their inventories ahead of new emission standards come into effect. Hence, we are less sure that this uptick will be sustainable going forward.”

On a seasonally-adjusted basis, retail sales expanded 0.96% in June, up from the 0.75% increase in May. Meanwhile, annual average growth in retail sales was stable at May’s 8.5% in June.

FocusEconomics Consensus Forecast participants expect retail sales to increase 8.7% in 2019, which is down 0.1 percentage points from last month’s estimate. In 2020, the panel foresees retail sales expanding 8.5%.

Author: Ricard Torné, Lead Economist

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China Retail Chart

China Retail June 2019

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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