Switzerland Retail March 2020


Switzerland: Retail sales tumble in March

April 30, 2020

Retail sales fell at the sharpest rate in the series’ history in March, with calendar-adjusted real retail sales falling 5.6% on an annual basis (February: +0.3% year-on-year). March’s plunge came as the country was in lockdown to contain the spread of the Covid-19 pandemic. Retail sales of non-food items, particularly automotive fuel; cultural and recreation goods; furniture; and clothing all plummeted in the month. On the other hand, food, beverages and tobacco sales surged in March.

On a month-on-month seasonally-adjusted basis, real retail sales plunged 6.2% in March, down markedly from the 0.3% increase registered in February. Meanwhile, annual average retail sales growth was flat in March, down from 0.4% in February.

FocusEconomics Consensus Forecast panelists expect private consumption to fall 1.2% in 2020, which is down 2.2 percentage points from last month’s forecast, before rising 2.2% in 2021.

Author:, Economist

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Switzerland Retail Chart

Switzerland Retail March 20 20

Note: Year-on-year changes and annual average variation of retail sales in %.
Source: Swiss Federal Statistics Office (BFS).

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