Retail sales up but dark clouds linger
Hong Kong - Retail sales for September topped $31 billion, but a new study shows spending across the region is likely to be restrained over the next 12 months.
Data from the Census & Statistics Department show total sales increased 15% in September 2011 compared to the previous year.
The results are a dip from total retail sales in August 2011, which totaled $34.3 billion, an increase of 29% on August 2010. Total retail sales the first nine months of 2011, were up 25% in value and 19% in volume.
A government spokesperson said tourist spending helped the good result but warned mounting external uncertainties would impact consumer confidence.
A new Nielsen study also shows that spending is likely to be restrained over the coming year as consumers show more reluctance to spend.Some 62% of consumers in Asia believe that the next 12 months will not be a good time to buy things they want or need. This is an increase of 3% compared to results in the Q2 and 5% over Q1 2011.
Therese Glennon, MD of consumer insight and innovation at Nielsen, said consumers are exercising more restraint when it comes to spending on everyday items, including groceries.
“The winners will be those retailers and manufacturers that are able to offer innovation and value to meet the needs of consumers.”
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- Nielsen Media Research
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