Hong Kong: Retail sales slow in October
November 29, 2012
In October, retail sales rose 3.7% over the same month last year. The print came in well below both the 8.5% expansion seen in September and market expectations of a 6.0% increase. The slower expansion in October was driven by contractions in sales of food and non-alcoholic beverages as well as of jewellery, watches and valuable gifts, which offset stronger sales in durable goods. In seasonally adjusted terms, retail sales rose 1.8% in the three-month period ending in October compared to the previous period ending in July, which was well above the 0.1% increase recorded in September. A government spokesman reiterated that strong inbound tourism should render some support to retail sales, but noted that persistent uncertainty in the external sector puts pressure on the local labour market, and thus dampens consumption.