KSH: Hungary's retail sales growth slows to 3.8%

Pharma

Retail sales in Hungary rose 3.8% in June is slowing from a 4.9% increase in May y.o.y. preliminary calendar year-adjusted data released by the Central Statistics Office (KSH) revealed today.

Retail sales were also up 3.8% according to unadjusted data.  Retail food sales rose by an adjusted 6.1%, while non-food sales were up 0.5% and vehicle-fuel sales increased 4.6%.

In the first half of the year, retail sales rose 6.1% according to both unadjusted and adjusted data. Food sales rose an adjusted 7.7%, non-food sales were up 4.6% and vehicle-fuel sales increased 4.9%.

KSH is expected to publish an update of the June data on August 27.

Analysts informed Hungarian news agency MTI that retail sales growth could continue to slow down as the discrepancy between the latest data and the base figures is eliminated from next month.

The figures for H1 2014 are not comparable with those for the same period of 2013 as KSH has been using different data sources since the introduction of a state monopoly on retail tobacco sales in July 2013. However, for the sake of comparison, KSH has also published data analyzed according to data sources used earlier.

Erste Bank analyst Gergely Gabler said that, based on the old methodology, retail sales growth slowed to 1.3% in June from 2.4% in May and 6.5% in April, noting that this is the last month when the changes in the measuring of retail sales data must be taken into account.

Buda-Cash Brokerage analyst Zoltan Reczey also said that the retail sales growth of June was well below both expectations and the previous month's figure. He said the slowdown would probably continue in the coming months.

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