Domestic retail trade at constant prices in Latvia increased by 2.1% y/y and declined by 0.4% m/m in August, according to the report by Central Statistical Bureau. Out of that retail trade gained 4.4% y/y in food and 0.7% y/y in non-food segment. In m/m terms food sales remained flat and non-food trade decreased by 0.6% m/m.
Previously, May-July retail trade data has put the indicator back on the stable upwards trend. The Bank of Latvia economist Agnese Bicevska on makroekonomika.lv comments that m/m decline on the indicator in August is in line with previous monthly fluctuations. At the same time, the central bank economist is optimistic on the confidence indicators both in Latvia and in Europe.
Previously, the CB reiterated that domestic demand cannot last forever as the main driver of growth without support of external demand. In this regard gradual improvement of the situation in Europe was seen positively by the CB.
Retail trade gained 6.4% y/y in H1/13. This was slightly below the expectations of 6.5%-7.2% growth in BNS banking analysts’ survey.
In 2012 overall retail trade went up by 9.7% y/y vs. 4.6% y/y growth in 2011, 2.2% y/y decline seen in 2010 and 28% drop in 2009.
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