RETAIL | Staff Reporter, Hong Kong

Retail sales surge 29.8% to $45.2b in February

Consumer spending hit a seasonal high before the Chinese New Year Festival.

The total value of retail sales extended its climb after rising 29.8% YoY to a provisional estimate of $45.2b in February amidst the usual spending galore occurring before the Chinese New Year, according to latest figures from the Census & Statistics Department.

The sales of electrical goods led the pack after sales value increased 27.9% for January and February 2018 followed by sales of jewellery, watches and clocks, and valuable gifts; wearing apparel; and medicines and cosmetics which rose 21%, 19.5% and 17.4% respectively.

Sales of food, alcoholic drinks and tobacco (+10.5%); commodities in department stores (+10.9%); motor vehicles and parts (+19.9%); footwear, allied products and other clothing accessories (+18.2%); fuels (+4.5%); furniture and fixtures (+9.3%); Chinese drugs and herbs (+7.6%); and optical shops (+2.1%) also registered varying degress of growth.

On the other hand, the value of sales of books, newspapers, stationery and gifts decreased by 1.3% in the first two months of 2018.

Outlook for retail sales remain positive in the near term amidst a continued recovery in inbound tourism from the Mainland, a government spokesperson noted.


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