Retail turnover was 1 percent up in February 2012 from February 2011. Turnover is positively affected by the shopping-day pattern. As 2012 is a leap year, February had one Wednesday extra compared with February last year. Retail prices were almost 3 percent higher. The volume of retail sales shrank by nearly 2 percent.
Despite the extra shopping-day, shops in the non-food sector suffered a turnover loss of 3.5 percent. Sales generated by home furnishing shops and DIY shops dropped dramatically by more than 7 percent. Spending in consumer electronics shops and clothes shops also declined, but household appliances shops, chemist’s shops and textile supermarkets realised turnover growth.
Food, drinks and tobacco shops recorded a 6 percent turnover growth in February 2012 relative to February 2011, partly due to the extra shopping day. Supermarket sales grew considerably; specialist shops generated the same turnover as one year previously.
Petrol stations generated a turnover growth by 2 percent. Petrol prices were 8 percent higher. Apart from traditional shops and petrol stations, the retail sector also includes mail-order firms and online shops. They achieved a turnover growth of 9 percent.
More figures can be found in dossier Business cycle.