Retail sales up 5.2% in July as people flock back to pubs

Department stores and bars among sectors with highest year-on-year volume increases

The largest volume increases in July sales compared with June were recorded in bars (+18.6%). File photograph: PA

The largest volume increases in July sales compared with June were recorded in bars (+18.6%). File photograph: PA

 

Volumes of retail sales were up 5.2 per cent in July compared with the same period last year as people flocked back to bars and pubs, the latest figures from the Central Statistics Office (CSO) show.

The figures also show retail sales for July were 14 per cent higher when compared to two years earlier, before the Covid-19 pandemic struck. Volumes were however down by 1.7 per cent when compared to June this year on a seasonally adjusted basis.

The sectors with the highest year-on-year volume increases were department stores (+16.7 per cent), bars (+15.8 per cent), pharmaceuticals, medical and cosmetic articles (+12.9 per cent), clothing, footwear and textiles (+6.7 per cent), and motor trades (+6.2 per cent).

The largest volume decreases were in other retail sales (-13.8 per cent), electrical goods (-7.9 per cent) and furniture and lighting (-7.7 per cent).

Compared to pre-Covid July 2019, several sectors showed significant changes, including four where there were decreases. These were bars (-39.7 per cent), books, newspapers and stationery (-31.5 per cent), fuel (-7 per cent) and department stores (-0.7 per cent).

All other sectors had a volume of sales in July that exceeded July 2019 levels. The highest increases were seen in motor trades (+21.7 per cent), food, beverages and tobacco (+16.7 per cent), electrical goods (+15.6 per cent) and pharmaceuticals, medical and cosmetic articles (+15.1 per cent).

The largest volume increases in July sales compared with June were recorded in bars (+18.6 per cent) and electrical goods (+5.8 per cent).

The sectors which experienced the largest decreases compared with June were books, newspapers and stationery (-21.6 per cent), other retail sales (-19.6 per cent), department stores (-17.2 per cent), and furniture and lighting (-8.7 per cent).

There were also reductions in clothing, footwear and textiles (-5.3 per cent), as well as pharmaceuticals, medical and cosmetic articles (-3.9 per cent).

When motor trades are excluded, the volume of retail sales fell by 4.7 per cent in July over the previous month, and increased by 1.6 per cent when compared to July 2020.

The proportion of retail sales transacted online from Irish registered companies was 4.6 per cent in July, down from 4.9 per cent of all retail sales in June and the same as July of last year.

The value of retail sales was 2.3 per cent lower in July than in June. On an annual basis, the value of retail sales was 8.1 per cent higher than July 2020.

Excluding motor trades, the value of retail sales decreased by 5.9 per cent in the month and increased by 2 per cent on an annual basis.

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