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Hungarian retail sales volume down 2.8% yr/yr in January

  Retail sales volume in Hungary fell a calendar year-adjusted 2.8% yea-on-year (yr/yr) in January 2009, the Central Statistical Office (KSH) reported on Tuesday.

Retail sales climbed 0.1% in January from December 2008 according to seasonally- and calendar year-adjusted figures. Retail sales have been dropping yr/yr each month since February 2007. The monthly rise was the first since a 0.2% increase from June to July last year.

Because of 2008 changes corresponding to a new revised statistical classification of economic activities in the European Union, the KSH figures include turnover from the sale of vehicle fuel from January 2009. Data were revised retroactively to permit comparison.

The sales volume of shops selling food, tobacco and beverages were down 1.5% from a year earlier in January, and was unchanged from December, according to adjusted figures.

Non-food retail sales were down 5.7% in twelve months, but rose 0.6% from January. Most types of shops registered falling turnover within the non-food segment.

The few exceptions included textiles, clothing and footwear shops, whose sales rose 2% yr/yr, and second-hand stores, whose sales grew 11.2% yr/yr in January, though dropped 3.4% from December.

January vehicle fuel sales were up a slight 0.1% from a year earlier and rose 0.5% from last December.

Hungarian retail sales totaled HUF 480.7 billion (€1.58 billion) at current prices in January. Retail sales in the EU dropped 1.2% in January and fell 2.2% in the euro zone compared to one year earlier. The largest slumps were recorded in Latvia and Lithuania.

KSH noted that the retail sales volume of vehicles and vehicle parts dropped 31.9% yr/yr in January. EU statistics do not include this figure in retail sales. (MTI-Econews)