Retail Trade, May 2014, published July 23

Posted by on Aug 7, 2014 in Featured | 0 comments

Retail sales in May were $42.0 billion, an increase of 0.7% from April and up 4.0% from May 2013.  Excluding sales by motor vehicle and parts dealers and by gasoline stations, retail sales were up by 1.9%  from May 2013.   

Retail sales in volume terms grew by 0.4% from April.  Increases in month-over-month sales were reported in 7 of 11 sectors representing 56% of retail trade.  May 2014 sales over May 2013 were up in all provinces, except Newfoundland and Labrador (-1.0%).   Alberta led the way with a 6.5% sales gain, followed by British Columbia (+6.4%) and  New Brunswick(+4.0%).   Ontario recorded a 3.8% gain over May 2013, while Quebec’s increase  over the same period was 2.2%.

Sales in the building material and garden equipment and supplies dealers sector in May were $2.3 billion, up 3.5% from April and a 0.9% gain from May 2013.  This was the first annualized increase for the industry following three consecutive year-over-year losses..  It was the third monthly gain in the past nine months.  Statistics Canada attributed the monthly gain in May to a delayed start to spring.

The motor vehicle and parts dealers sector saw sales climb 2.5% from April and grow by 5.7% from May 2013.  Gasoline station sales were up 2.0% from April.  This was the seventh consecutive monthly increase.  Gasoline station sales grew by 11.8% from May 2013.

Sales at food and beverage stores were down 1.6% from April to May and declined by 0.3% from May 2013 to May 2014.  Sales at supermarkets and other grocery stores decreased 1.9% from a month earlier and were down 1.4% from May 2013.  Beer, wine and liquor store sales decreased 1.0% in May 2014 over May 2013.

General merchandise stores sales decreased 0.5% from April but were 4.3%
higher than in May 2013, standing at $5.2 billion.  “General merchandise stores”
include department stores, warehouse clubs, superstores and home and auto supplies stores and account for 12% of total retail sales.  Department store sales fell 0.1% from April but were up 2.8% from May 2013.  Food and non-alcoholic beverages account for approximately 25% of sales at general merchandise stores.

Sales at furniture and home furnishings stores were up 3.7% from April at $1.4 billion and increased 4.2% from April 2013.  Sales at electronics and appliance stores fell 1.7% from April to $1.2 billion.  They were down 1.2% from May 2013.  Sales at health and personal care stores dropped 1.2% from April to $3.1 billion.  They were up 6.6% from May 2013.