Mar retail sales up 40.9%

The value of total retail sales in March, provisionally estimated at $33.6 billion, rose 40.9% compared with the same month in 2022, the Census & Statistics Department announced today.


After netting out the effect of price changes over the same period, the provisional estimate of the volume of total retail sales for the month increased 39.4% year-on-year.


Of the total retail sales value in March, online sales accounted for 7.6%. Provisionally estimated at $2.6 billion, the value of online retail sales dropped 8.6% compared with a year earlier.


The value of sales of jewellery, watches and clocks, and valuable gifts increased 165%.


This was followed by sales of other consumer goods not elsewhere classified (+38.2% in value); wearing apparel (+136%); food, alcoholic drinks and tobacco (+14%); commodities in department stores (+37.2%); medicines and cosmetics (+64.4%); motor vehicles and parts (+44.7%); fuels (+14.8%); footwear, allied products and other clothing accessories (+187.9%); furniture and fixtures (+8.4%); Chinese drugs and herbs (+44.3%); books, newspapers, stationery and gifts (+34.1%); and optical shops (+137.8%).


On the other hand, the value of sales of commodities in supermarkets decreased 6.5% in the month over a year earlier. This was followed by sales of electrical goods and other consumer durable goods not elsewhere classified (-8.2% in value).


The Government said that the value of total retail sales surged further in March over a year earlier as consumer and visitor spending continued to improve, though the low base of comparison also contributed.


Looking ahead, the Government pointed out that the recovery of inbound tourism and private consumption should continue to benefit the retail sector.


The disbursement of a new round of consumption vouchers will render further support, it added.