Irish Economy
Irish Economy: Cars boost retail sales in July; Ex-cars sales dip
By Finfacts Team
Aug 28, 2014 - 4:06 PM

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Irish Economy: The  volume of retail sales (i.e. excluding price effects) increased by 8.2% in July 2014 when compared with June 2014 and there was an increase of 8.6% in the annual figure with the introduction of new 142 car registration plates triggering the surge. If Motor Trades are excluded, there was a dip of 0.7% in the volume of retail sales in July 2014 when compared with June 2014 and there was an increase of 3.1% in the annual figure.

The CSO said that sectors with the largest month on month volume increases were Motor Trades (+36.1%), Books, Newspapers and Stationery (+4.3%) and Electrical Goods (+1.5%). The sectors with the largest monthly falls were Furniture and Lighting (-10.7%), Fuel (-8.8%) and Other Retail Sales (-6.4%).

There was an increase of 5.5% in the value of retail sales in July 2014 when compared with June 2014 and there was an annual increase of 5.9% when compared with July 2013.

If Motor Trades are excluded, there was a monthly decrease of 0.8% in the value of retail sales and an annual increase of only 1.0%.  

David McNamara, economist at Davy, commented  -- "As expected, retail sales surged in July on the back of the introduction of the '142' number plates. A 36.1% rise in motor sales (+32.1% yoy) pushed retail sales up by 8.2% over the month and 8.6% over the year. The more relevant trend in today's data is the strength of underlying sales given that this series provides the best steer for consumer spending. Retail sales excluding motor sales were down 0.7% on June but up 3.1% over the year, down from a 4.2% yoy rise in June.

Other sectors performing well in the year to July were electrical goods (+32% yoy), furniture and lighting (+13.3%), clothing and footwear (+5.2%), department stores (+3.8%) and non-specialised stores (+3.1%), which include supermarkets. In contrast, bar sales (-2.3%), books, newspapers and stationery (-4%) and pharmaceutical and cosmetics (-2.5%) have performed poorest.

Overall, today’s data provide further positive evidence that consumer spending will contribute to GDP growth this year. We expect a 1.5% rise in consumer spending this year, accelerating to 1.9% in 2015."

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