Real-time retail consumption tracker, February 26 – March 5, 2023
The first week of March saw yet another major drop in nominal retail consumption (-9.2% y-o-y), mainly resulting from the panic buying on these dates last year.
If we exclude the effect of the abnormally high spending last year, retail consumption on February 27 – March 5 grew by +5.8% y-o-y, which is higher than the growth rate in January (+4.9% y-o-y) and in December (+3.5% y-o-y). In real terms, adjusted for the high base, retail consumption decreased by 5.1% y-o-y (-6.9% y-o-y in January).
In 2022, the feverish demand persisted from February 27 to March 7, with spending daily exceeding its average January level by 20%–50%. Therefore, the high base effect will affect the annual retail consumption growth rates this week as well (March 6 – March 12, 2023).
Non-Food and Food Items were hit the hardest, as their consumption plummeted by 28.5% y-o-y and 1.6% y-o-y, respectively, on February 27 – March 5 (-4.2% y-o-y and +6.4% y-o-y in January).
If we exclude the effect of the high spending a year ago, food consumption last week grew by 7.1% y-o-y, while non-food consumption fell by 5.8% y-o-y. A slight deterioration in Non-Food Items consumption against January can be traced across many large spending categories, for instance, adjusted spending in Department Stores and Marketplaces went up 30.4% y-o-y (+31.1% y-o-y in January); Clothes, Footwear, Accessories went down by 18.0% y-o-y (-15.4% y-o-y in January).
Panic buying had a weak impact on consumption rates in Services, which, adjusted for it, grew by 17.6% y-oy (unadjusted +12.2% y-o-y). Some categories showed a little acceleration, e.g., Cafes, Bars, and Restaurants (+16% y-o-y vs +13.7% y-o-y, excluding the high base effect) and Railway Tickets (+51.4% y-o-y vs +36.3% y-o-y).
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