Information from the Statistics and Census Service (DSEC) indicated that retail trade continued to see an upturn in the fourth quarter of 2020, with the value of retail sales surging by 102.5% quarter-to-quarter to MOP18.16 billion. After removing the effect of price changes, the sales volume index leapt by 109.8% quarter-to-quarter. As compared with the same quarter of 2019, the value of retail sales in the fourth quarter dropped by 12.5%, a smaller year-on-year decline than in the third quarter (-50.4%); meanwhile, the sales volume index decreased by 8.6%.
Among the major retail trade activities, sales values of Cosmetics & Sanitary Articles (-38.5%), Automotive Fuels (-33.8%) and Adults’ Clothing (-29.7%) registered notable year-on-year decrease, whereas sales values of Leather Goods (+19.7%) and Motor Vehicles (+5.1%) increased. In terms of volume of retail sales, sales volume indices of Cosmetics & Sanitary Articles (-35.8%), Pharmacies (-24.2%) and Adults’ Clothing (-22.2%) declined year-on-year, while the indices of Leather Goods (+26.5%) and Communication Equipment (+9.6%) saw a rise.
Value of retail sales in the fourth quarter of 2020 more than doubled (+102.5%) as compared with the revised figure (MOP8.97 billion) in the third quarter. Sales values of Communication Equipment (+293.0%), Watches, Clocks & Jewellery (+248.4%) and Leather Goods (+214.8%) registered sizeable growth over the previous quarter; however, sales values of Supermarkets (-8.1%) and Automotive Fuels (-5.5%) decreased. Sales volume indices of Communication Equipment, Watches, Clocks & Jewellery and Leather Goods soared by 299.3%, 252.9% and 218.8% quarter-to-quarter respectively, whereas the indices of Supermarkets and Automotive Fuels dropped by 8.1% and 6.5% respectively.
For the whole year of 2020, total value of retail sales decreased by 41.5% year-on-year to MOP45.19 billion. Among the major retail trade activities, sales values of Watches, Clocks & Jewellery (MOP7.27 billion), Adults’ Clothing (MOP4.16 billion) and Cosmetics & Sanitary Articles (MOP1.69 billion) declined by 54.1%, 53.3% and 52.5% year-on-year respectively, whereas sales value of Supermarkets (MOP5.15 billion) grew by 4.1%. In 2020, the sales volume index fell by 40.2% year-on-year, with the indices of Watches, Clocks & Jewellery (-58.0%), Cosmetics & Sanitary Articles (-50.9%) and Adults’ Clothing (-48.3%) showing a marked drop; on the other hand, the sales volume index of Supermarkets (+3.1%) increased.
In respect of retailers’ comments, 55.3% of the retailers anticipated a year-on-year decrease in the sales volume in the first quarter of 2021, while 37.2% expected the sales volume to stay stable and 7.5% forecasted an increase. Meanwhile, 66.2% of the retailers predicted that the retail prices would remain steady year-on-year in the first quarter, 26.8% foresaw a decrease and 7.0% expected an increase. As compared with the fourth quarter of 2020, about 49.6% of the retailers envisaged sluggish business in the first quarter of 2021, whereas the retailers expecting stable performance (42.4%) and those anticipating a favourable outlook (8.0%) together accounted for 50.4% of the total.
(Statistics and Census Service)
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