Retail turnover was 2.5 percent higher in March 2012 than in March 2011. Retail prices were almost 3 percent higher. The volume of retail sales shrank somewhat.
Retail turnover is affected by the shopping-day pattern. March 2012 had a Tuesday and Wednesday fewer than March 2011, but a Friday and Saturday extra. The positive effect of this on turnover is estimated at approximately almost 3 percent.
Shops in the non-food sector realised an increase in turnover of almost 2 percent. Shops selling consumer electronics, clothes, chemist’s items and textile supermarkets reported higher turnover. Sales generated by home furnishing shops and DIY stores fell considerably, just as in the preceding months. Retailers of household appliances realised the same turnover as one year previously.
Food, drink and tobacco shops recorded nearly 5 percent turnover growth in March 2012 compared with March 2011. The more favourable shopping-day pattern played an important role in this sector. Supermarket sales grew considerably; specialist food shops realised slightly more turnover than one year previously.
Petrol stations had the same turnover as one year previously; petrol prices were 8 percent higher. Apart from traditional shops and petrol stations, the retail sector also includes mail-order companies and online shops. They achieved a turnover growth of 5 percent.
The figures in this article were updated based on retail figures released on 14 May 2012. The revision is based on more recent and more detailed information.
More figures can be found in dossier Business cycle.