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Singapore's Feb retail sales down 3.2% year on year despite 51.3% surge in motor sales

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Despite a year-on-year 51.3 per cent surge in motor sales, February retail sales saw a 3.2 per cent fall from the same month last year, with only goods in three categories registering an increase in year-on-year sales.

DESPITE a year-on-year 51.3 per cent surge in motor sales, February retail sales saw a 3.2 per cent fall from the same month last year, with only goods in three categories registering an increase in year-on-year sales.

Excluding motor sales, it dipped 9.6 per cent on year, figures released by the Department of Statistics showed on Friday.

When compared to January this year, however, total sales improved by 1.7 per cent in the month that marked the Lunar New Year. Stripping away motor sales, which saw a 15 per cent increase on month, February sales fell 1.1 per cent from January.

Aside from motor sales, only medical goods and toiletries, and mini-marts and convenience stores saw increases in year-on-year sales, but growth was small. The former picked up by 4.1 per cent and the latter, 0.8 per cent.

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Six other categories saw double-digit declines on year, with sales of food and beverage items seeing the steepest decline at 34.7 per cent. Sales of telecommunications apparatus and computers chalked up the second largest decline at 16.6 per cent.

When compared to January, six categories saw better performance. However, aside from motor sales which saw the biggest rise, the other five saw increases of only between 0.9 and 5.2 per cent.

Optical goods and books saw a 8.7 per cent fall from January, the largest decline.

Sale of food and beverage services declined 1.9 per cent on year, but rose 0.3 per cent from the previous month.

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