Indonesia: Retail sales continue to decelerate in March
May 4, 2011
In March, real retail sales expanded 17.6% over the same month last year, according to the Bank Indonesia's Retail Sales Survey (RSS). The reading represented a slowdown over the revised 18.0% increase observed in February (previously reported: +18.2% year-on-year) but marked the 19th consecutive month of double-digit growth. As in previous months, clothing sales led the expansion, increasing a stellar 51.7% over March 2010. Moreover, food and tobacco sales pushed 24.4% higher in March. Despite the robust increase, annual average growth in real retail sales fell for a sixth consecutive month, dropping from 23.2% in February to 22.3% in March. According to the RSS, retailers anticipate sales to continue growing in the short term, which bodes well for private consumption. Meanwhile, industrial production grew 6.2% in March over the same month the previous year, which was above the revised 1.9% increase observed in February (previously reported: +4.3% yoy). As a result, annual average growth stepped up from 4.5% in February to 4.8% in March.