August retail sales hit $38b

Business | Gary Poon and Jeannie Tang 3 Oct 2018

Hong Kong's retail sales in August rose 9.5 percent year-on-year to HK$38.2 billion in terms of value on the back of solid local demand and growth in visitor arrivals, according to the Census and Statistics Department's latest figures.

In volume terms, retail sales grew 8.1 percent in August, compared with a 5.9 percent rise in July.

Sales of jewelry, watches and clocks and valuable gifts increased by 21.6 percent compared with a year earlier, followed by medicines and cosmetics, with a 16.3 percent rise in value. Footwear, allied products and other clothing accessories went up by 13.6 percent in value.

However, sales of commodities in supermarkets only rose 0.3 percent in value.

Meanwhile, the value of sales of electrical goods and other consumer durable goods decreased by 3.5 percent, while sales of books, newspapers, stationery and gifts dropped by 2.3 percent in value.

A department spokesman commented that in the near term, favorable job and income conditions and sustained growth in inbound tourism should render support to the retail sector, while the government will closely monitor how consumer sentiment will be affected by the external headwinds in the period ahead.

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