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Retail sales trot, not gallop

The unadjusted volume of retail sales in November 2004 was 4.6% higher than a year earlier, while in seasonally adjusted terms it rose 3.7%, theCentral Statistics Office (KSH) reported. Although these figures reflect a slower rate of growth than in the preceding months, the increase was still higher than the 2.3% average of the EU-25, KSH?s statistics show. In the meantime, the EU also witnessed a rising trend in retail sales.
Between January and November, the sales value of retail stores and mail order retailers totaled Ft 4,699 billion at current prices, with November alone accounting for Ft 464 billion. The slowing growth rate was most pronounced in food retailers? sales, which rose by a moderate 0.9% in November yr/yr. In the non-food sector, retailers? turnover expanded at a faster than average rate: the yr/yr increase was 6.9% in November and 9.1% in the first 11 months. The impact of the start of the Christmas shopping season in November was most noticeable in surging sales of mail order and perfume retailers. The sales of medications and other medical products rose by over 10%, while the sales volume of furniture, household items, construction materials, books, newspapers and stationery grew by 5%-10%.