Information from the Statistics and Census Service (DSEC) indicated that value of retail sales for the first quarter of 2019 decreased by 1.9% year-on-year to MOP20.38 billion; yet, an increase of 2.6% was observed as compared with the revised figure (MOP19.87 billion) in the fourth quarter of 2018. In the first quarter, Watches, Clocks & Jewellery accounted for 20.9% of the total retail sales, followed by Goods in Department Stores (17.6%), Leather Goods (13.6%) and Adults’ Clothing (12.4%).

Among the major retail activities, sales values of Communication Equipment (-19.9%), Motor Vehicles (-16.7%) and Adults’ Clothing (-12.9%) saw notable year-on-year decrease in the first quarter. On the other hand, sales values of Goods in Department Stores and Goods in Supermarkets both recorded a growth of 8.6%.

After removing the effect of price changes, volume of retail sales fell by 2.1% year-on-year in the first quarter, with significant decline in the sales volumes of Motor Vehicles (-22.9%), Communication Equipment (-14.0%) and Adults’ Clothing (-13.6%). Meanwhile, sales volumes of Leather Goods (+7.7%), Goods in Department Stores (+6.0%) and Goods in Supermarkets (+6.0%) increased year-on-year.

In comparison with the previous quarter, sales values of Leather Goods, Goods in Department Stores and Goods in Supermarkets grew by 12.4%, 10.9% and 9.7% respectively in the first quarter of 2019. By contrast, sales values of Motor Vehicles (-24.7%) and Communication Equipment (-10.1%) recorded decrease. Volume of retail sales increased by 3.9% quarter-to-quarter; sales volumes of Leather Goods (+18.3%), Goods in Department Stores (+11.7%) and Goods in Supermarkets (+8.7%) rose notably, while sales volume of Motor Vehicles (-29.1%) showed marked decline.

In respect of retailers’ comments, 54.0% of the retailers anticipated the sales volume in the second quarter of 2019 to stay stable year-on-year, 28.6% forecasted a decrease and 17.4% expected an increase. Meanwhile, 75.4% of the retailers anticipated the retail prices to remain steady year-on-year in the second quarter, 13.1% foresaw a decrease and 11.5% predicted an increase. As compared with the first quarter of 2019, 46.0% of the retailers expected stable performance in the second quarter, 33.7% envisaged unfavourable business prospects and 20.3% predicted favourable outlook.

Related Information: Retail Sales Survey for the 1st Quarter 2019