Singapore retail sales decline 3 pct in November 2018

Shoppers at department store Metro’s Paragon outlet on Black Friday on Nov 23 2018

Shoppers at department store Metro’s Paragon outlet on Black Friday on Nov 23 2018

It is predicted the figures could lead to a spike in December's report, as Christmas turnovers are expected higher.

Australian retail sales improved in November, boosted by Black Friday and Cyber Monday sales held late in the month.

Singapore's retail sales decreased 3 percent year-on-year in November 2018, compared to a 0.1-percent increase in October, the Department of Statistics of Singapore said on Friday.

The ABS noted that it was "highest level" of online retail sales figures it had ever collected.

Economists had forecast an increase in turnover of 0.3%, the same as October.

Meanwhile, the optical goods and books segment posted a sales decline of 4.6 per cent, while food retailers' takings fell by 3.7 per cent and supermarkets and hypermarkets were down by 1.4 per cent.

Australian retail sales topped forecasts in November, recording the largest monthly percentage increase since April past year. Even so, Australia's retail sector faces several headwinds amid a downturn in the country's property market, sluggish wage growth and high household debt.

"There was also a notable rise for clothing, footwear and personal accessories retailing of 1.5%".

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Online retail turnover contributed 6.6 per cent to total retail turnover in original terms in November 2018, a rise from 5.9 per cent in October 2018.

"Both of these industries were impacted by strong promotional activity in the November month, including Black Friday sales."

By state and territory, the ABS said that after falling heavily in the prior two months, sales in New South Wales, Australia's most populous state, rose strongly, increasing by 0.8%. South Australia was relatively unchanged (0.0 per cent).

However, department stores registered an increase of 8.7 per cent in sales compared to the same period in 2017, arising partially from higher sales during the Black Friday period.

Separately, sales of food and beverage services were up by 2.4 per cent year on year, to a value of S$845 million.

For the month of November, household goods retailing spiked 1.2% [seasonally adjusted], with electrical and electronic goods retailing jumping 3.3%.

November turned out to be a solid month for retailers, as shoppers brought forward their Christmas spending.

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