Hong Kong: Retail sales record fifth consecutive decline in June
July 31, 2014
In June, retail sales fell 7.5% over the same month last year, which followed the revised 4.6% drop tallied in May (previously reported: -4.7% year-on-year). June’s print represented the fifth consecutive contraction and exceeded the 5.2% decline that markets had expected. A decline in sales at department stores as well as significantly lower sales of jewelry and valuable gifts and consumer durable goods were behind the monthly drop.
A government spokesman stated that the decline in retail sales mainly reflected a, “moderation in tourist spending on some big-ticket items against a still high base of comparison in June last year.” The spokesman also noted that further down the road, “the near-term performance of retail sales will remain susceptible to the base effects and the changing visitor spending pattern, although the still favourable labour market conditions should render some support.”
Retail sales fell a seasonally-adjusted 8.4% in the three-month period up to June, compared to the previous three-month period ending in March. The reading followed the 8.8% drop recorded in May.