Hong Kong: Retail sales slow in November
December 30, 2010
In November, the volume of retail sales rose 15.2% over the same month last year. The figure was below the 19.7% increase recorded in October but in line with market expectations that retail sales would expand 15.3%. While the monthly expansion was broad-based, the main drivers behind the resilient growth were sales of consumer durable goods, which increased 29.2% year-on-year; sales of jewellery, watches and valuable gifts rose 26.1% yoy. Seasonally-adjusted figures corroborate the strong growth suggested by the annual data. Retail sales increased 8.4% in the three-month period ending in November compared to the period ending in August. Moreover, the trend continues to point upwards, as annual average growth in retail sales increased from 14.7% in October to 15.1% in November. Looking ahead, a government spokesman stated that local consumer sentiment is strengthening on the back of improvements in jobs and income, together with robust levels of inbound tourism. These positive factors should continue to buttress consumption.