Retail sales in Czechia in August decreased by 2.8% year-on-year and by 0.8% month-on-month amid worries about the worsening economic situation.
August's decrease was steeper than in July, which eased to a drop of 1.8% y-o-y after a drop of 4.1% y-o-y in June.
“Sales in retail trade adjusted for price effects continued to decrease y-o-y for the sixteenth successive month,” highlighted Jana Gotvaldova of the Czech Statistical Office (CZSO).
“The sales decrease in August was influenced by the lower sale of non-food goods and food,” Gotvalodva continued, adding that “sale of automotive fuel maintained a sales growth since March.”
Y-o-y sales of non-food goods dropped by 4.1% and food by 3.2%. Sales of automotive fuel increased by 3.7%.
Analysts surveyed by the Czech Press Agency (CTK) said that Czechs continue to struggle with pressures posed by inflation and a drop in real wages.
“The weakening of real consumption continued during the summer,” UniCredit’s analyst Jiri Pour was quoted as saying by CTK, while Petr Dufek of Banka Creditas stated that for households “the rising housing costs” will remain a primary concern.
The Czech central bank (CNB) could be prompted to lower interest rates if the hampered consumption slows down the acceleration of prices significantly, Vit Hradil of the consulting company Cyrrus told CTK. This could “likely happen at the November board meeting,“ Hradil predicted.