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Australia: retail up by 16.9% in May

Jul 8, 2020 Australia
Australia: retail up by 16.9% in May
According to the latest Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS) Retail Trade figures, Australian retail turnover rose 16.9 %in May 2020, seasonally adjusted
This updates the preliminary result of a 16.3% rise published on the 19th of June 2020 and follows a decline of 17.7% in the previous month: "The gradual easing of social distancing regulations, and the re-opening of physical stores, bolstered retail trade in May. Retailers across a range of industries reported high numbers of consumers returning to stores, with some retailers noting levels similar to those seen in December", commented Ben James, Director of Quarterly Economy Wide Surveys.

There were large month-on-month rises in clothing, footwear and personal accessory retailing (129.2%) and cafes, restaurants and takeaway food services (30.3%), with both industries coming off very low levels of trade in April. Levels in these industries remain well below the same time last year.

Food retailing (7.2%), household goods retailing (16.6%), department stores (44.4%) and other retailing (9.4%) all recorded month-on-month rises in seasonally adjusted terms and are now at levels well above the same time last year. Retailers reported themes of continued spend on home improvements and high demand for recreational goods.

Online sales
contributed 10.1% to total retail turnover, down on the 11.1% contributed in April 2020, as physical stores reopened. This is still four percentage points higher than the 6.2%seen in May 2019. 

Image credits: Holger Link on Unsplash

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