Croatia's working-day adjusted retail sales fell by a real 0.4% y/y in October 2013 after declining 0.5% y/y a month earlier, the statistics office said on Dec 4.
In seasonally-adjusted terms, retail sales decreased by a real 0.5% m/m in October after falling 2.2% m/m in September. The statistics office will provide a breakdown by categories later in December.
The negative performance is somewhat milder than the anticipated 1.5% y/y drop by a group of macroeconomic analysts, polled by news agency HINA and cited by daily Poslovni Dnevnik. The analysts expect that retail sales will continue to shrink, considering the falling employment, real wages and demand for bank credits by households, and with the end of the summer tourism season.
The end of the tourism season already marked the turn to rising unemployment and falling employment in September, which together with stagnating wages will restrain consumption. The registered unemployment rate for October 2013 was 20.3%, up from September's 19.1%.
The latest retail trade data are also one the first indications that the GDP might drop for a ninth consecutive quarter in Q4 after shrinking by a real 0.6% y/y in Q3.
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