Provisional statistics of retail sales for June 2017
Provisional statistics of retail sales for June 2017
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     The Census and Statistics Department (C&SD) released the latest figures on retail sales today (August 2).

     The value of total retail sales in June 2017, provisionally estimated at $33.7 billion, edged up by 0.1% over the same month in 2016. The revised estimate of the value of total retail sales in May 2017 increased by 0.4% over a year earlier. For the first half of 2017, it was provisionally estimated that the value of total retail sales decreased by 0.6% compared with the same period in 2016.

     After netting out the effect of price changes over the same period, the provisional estimate of the volume of total retail sales in June 2017 increased by 0.4% over a year earlier. The revised estimate of the volume of total retail sales in May 2017 increased by 0.6% over a year earlier. For the first half of 2017, the provisional estimate of the total retail sales decreased by 0.8% in volume compared with the same period in 2016.

     Analysed by broad type of retail outlet in descending order of the provisional estimate of the value of sales and comparing June 2017 with June 2016, the value of sales of commodities in supermarkets increased by 0.4%. This was followed by sales of commodities in department stores (+0.8% in value); food, alcoholic drinks and tobacco (+2.6%); other consumer goods, not elsewhere classified (+3.8%); motor vehicles and parts (+7.3%); miscellaneous consumer durable goods (+3.7%); furniture and fixtures (+4.7%); and Chinese drugs and herbs (+1.7%).

     On the other hand, the value of sales of jewellery, watches and clocks, and valuable gifts decreased by 0.8% in June 2017 compared with a year earlier. This was followed by sales of wearing apparel (-1.4% in value); medicines and cosmetics (-0.5%); electrical goods and photographic equipment (-8.1%); fuels (-0.8%); footwear, allied products and other clothing accessories (-4.5%); books, newspapers, stationery and gifts (-6.3%); and optical shops (-3.8%).

     Based on the seasonally adjusted series, the provisional estimate of the value of total retail sales increased by 2.4% in the second quarter of 2017 over the preceding quarter, while the provisional estimate of the volume of total retail sales increased by 2.5%.

     These retail sales statistics measure the sales receipts in respect of goods sold by local retail establishments and are primarily intended for gauging the short-term business performance of the local retail sector. They cover consumer spending on goods but not on services (such as those on housing, catering, medical care and health services, transport and communication, financial services, education and entertainment) which account for over 50% of the overall consumer spending. Moreover, they include spending on goods in Hong Kong by visitors but exclude spending outside Hong Kong by Hong Kong residents. Hence they should not be regarded as indicators for measuring overall consumer spending.

     Users interested in the trend of overall consumer spending should refer to the data series of private consumption expenditure (PCE), which is a major component of the Gross Domestic Product published at quarterly intervals. Compiled from a wide range of data sources, PCE covers consumer spending on both goods (including goods purchased from all channels) and services by Hong Kong residents whether locally or abroad. Please refer to the C&SD publication “Gross Domestic Product (Quarterly)” for more details.

Commentary

     A government spokesman indicated that retail sales continued to grow slightly in June over a year earlier, as local consumption demand stayed firm and the drag from inbound tourism receded.

     Looking ahead, the prevailing favourable job and income conditions should render a solid support to local consumer sentiment. Nonetheless, the near-term performance of retail sales would also depend on the pace of recovery in inbound tourism and the extent of improvement in external economic environment. The Government will monitor the situation closely.

Further information

     Table 1 presents the revised figures on value index and value of retail sales for all retail outlets and by broad type of retail outlet for May 2017 as well as the provisional figures for June 2017. The provisional figures on the value of retail sales for all retail outlets and by broad type of retail outlet as well as the corresponding year-on-year changes for the first half of 2017 are also shown.

     Table 2 presents the revised figures on volume index of retail sales for all retail outlets and by broad type of retail outlet for May 2017 as well as the provisional figures for June 2017. The provisional figures on year-on-year changes for the first half of 2017 are also shown.

     Table 3 shows the movements of the value and volume of total retail sales in terms of the year-on-year rate of change for a month compared with the same month in the preceding year based on the original series, and in terms of the rate of change for a three-month period compared with the preceding three-month period based on the seasonally adjusted series.

     The classification of retail establishments follows the Hong Kong Standard Industrial Classification (HSIC) Version 2.0, which is used in various economic surveys for classifying economic units into different industry classes.

     More detailed statistics are given in the “Report on Monthly Survey of Retail Sales”. Users can download this publication free of charge at the website of the C&SD (www.censtatd.gov.hk/hkstat/sub/sp320.jsp?productCode=B1080003). Alternatively, the historical series of retail sales statistics can be downloaded in the form of a statistical table at the website of the C&SD (www.censtatd.gov.hk/hkstat/sub/sp320.jsp?productCode=D5600089).

     Users who have enquiries about the survey results may contact the Distribution Services Statistics Section of C&SD (Tel: 3903 7400; email: mrs@censtatd.gov.hk).
 
Ends/Wednesday, August 2, 2017
Issued at HKT 16:30
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