Retail sales fall 6% in June
The volume of retail sales fell 6 per cent in June, compared to the same month in 2019. This is after adjusting for inflation, which was measured at 1.2 per cent in June.
In value terms, retail sales fell 4.8 per cent to an estimated $94.3 million, year-on-year.
Four of the seven sectors recorded higher sales volumes, with building material stores having the largest volume increase of 7.5 per cent.
Retail sales activity was affected by Covid-19 restrictions, such as curfew hours, alphabetised shopping days and limited in-store customer occupancy for some establishments.
The sales volume of food stores and liquor stores increased 0.4 per cent and 4.4 per cent, respectively. In value terms, they rose 4.1 per cent 6.6 per cent higher, respectively.
The higher sales value was partly attributed to the increase in prices for food and alcohol of 3 per cent and 2.2 per cent, respectively.
An increase of 1.7 per cent was recorded for the “all other stores types” sales volume, which rose in value year-on-year by 2.6 per cent. The value of sales for marine and boat suppliers jumped 66.3 per cent as a result of greater sales of boating accessories. The sales value of furniture, appliances and electronics was 18.2 per cent higher while the sales value for pharmacies marginally increased 0.6 per cent.
In contrast, gross receipts of miscellaneous goods dropped 53.5 per cent, reflecting fewer sales in tourist-related stores.
The motor vehicle stores sales volume decreased 18.1 per cent as a result of fewer vehicles being sold. The value of sales receipts decreased 17.2 per compared to the same month in 2019.
After adjusting for inflation, the volume of sales for service stations fell 23.6 per cent. The value of sales was down 25.6 per cent, which also reflected a 2.7 per cent decrease in the price of fuel.
Retailers attributed the decline to the implemented curfew and fewer vehicles travelling to work as a result of more people working from home.
The sales volume for apparel stores dropped 44.2 per cent. In value terms, sales revenue for apparel stores decreased 43.3 per cent.
Year-over-year, imports via courier increased $1.7 million to $12.9 million due to more imports of clothing and pharmaceuticals. Imports by households via sea rose $1.2 million to $2.0 million as a result of increased imports of clothing, precious and semi precious stones and jewellery, machinery, mechanical appliances and furniture.
Limited commercial flights during June resulted in declarations by returning residents falling $4.4 million to $100,000, and $29,000 of imports via the Bermuda Post Office.
The Retail Sales Index was published by the Department of Statistics.