The volume of eurozone retail sales dipped by 0.3% in July compared with a month earlier on a seasonally adjusted basis. According to figures from Eurostat, the EU's statistical office, the comparable figure for the broader EU28 area was down 0.2%.
The 0.3% decline is due to falls of 0.9% for auto fuel and of 0.5% for food, drinks and tobacco (FDT). Non-food products rose by 0.1%. In the EU28, the 0.2% fall in the volume of retail trade is due to decreases of 0.6% for auto fuel and of 0.2% for FDT. Non-food remained stable.
Among member states for which data are available, the largest decreases in the total retail trade volume were registered in
- Germany (-1.2%)
- Croatia (-1.1%)
- Estonia (1.0%)
- Austria (-1.0%)
The highest increases were in
- Slovenia (+1.4%)
- Romania (+1.2%)
- Sweden (both +1.2%)
Behind the figures
The index of the volume of retail trade measures the evolution of the turnover in retail trade, adjusted for price changes (deflated), that is the evolution of the total amount of goods sold, based on data adjusted for calendar and seasonal effects.
Eurostat explains that the seasonally adjusted euro area and EU series are calculated by aggregating the seasonally adjusted national data. It adds that it carries out the seasonal adjustment of the data for those countries that do not adjust data for seasonal effects.
Missing observations from member states for recent months are estimated for the calculation of the euro area and the EU aggregates.
Year-on-year figures up
Switching to year-on-year comparisons, the 2.6% increase in the volume of retail trade in the euro area in July 2017, compared with July 2016. This is due to rises of 3.9% for non-food products, of 1.5% for FDT and of 0.8% for automotive fuel.
In the EU28, the 2.7% increase in retail trade volume is due to rises of 4.0% for non-food products, of 1.4% for FDT and of 1.2% for automotive fuel.
Among member states for which data are available, the highest increases in the total retail trade volume were registered in
- Slovenia (+10.0%)
- Romania (8.8%)
- Poland (+7.9%)
Belgium was down by -1.0%.
Other recent EU economic statistics include the purchasing managers index released last Friday by data specialist IHS Markit. The final eurozone figure came in at 57.4 in August. This was exactly the same as the early flash figure and higher than the final July figure of 56.6.