Serbia Retail Sales Rise on Year in January

Analysis

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Serbia's retail sales increased by real 4.1% year-on-year in January, after rising by 3.6% in December, the Belgrade-based Central Statistical Office (RBS) said in a statement on Thursday.

The boost was primarily driven by gains in sales of food, beverages, and tobacco (4.7%), non-food products (4.7%), and automotive fuel (1.2%). Month-on-month, retail sales decreased by 20.3% in January after adding 8.3% in December. At current prices, retail sales grew 9.9% on the year in January but were 20.3% lower on the month.

In a separate report the statistcs agency said that Serbia's unemployment rate edged up to 9.1% in the last quarter of 2023, slightly higher than the 9.0% in the previous three-month period and compared with 9.4% in the same period of 2022.

The number of unemployed people rose by 0.9% from the previous quarter to 288.200, and employment fell by 0.6% to 2.87 million. The labor force participation rate decreased by 0.2 percentage points to 55.6%, and the employment rate decreased by the same margin to 50.5%.

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