Commentary Directory

Euro Area Retail Sales: August 2023

Jacob Hess
October 04, 2023

Euro Area Retail Sales

10/4/2023 (August 2023)

-1.2% MoM (-2.1% YoY)

Below Expectations

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Fuel Sales -3.0% MoM (-7.7% MoM)
Food Sales -1.2% MoM (-3.2% YoY)
Non-Food Sales -0.9% MoM (-0.2% YoY) Item 9

In August 2023, retail trade volumes saw a decline both in the euro area and the EU, according to Eurostat data. The euro area experienced a -1.2% MoM drop compared to July 2023, while the EU saw a -0.9% MoM decrease. Year-over-year, the numbers are even more concerning, with a -2.1% decline in the euro area and a -2.0% fall in the EU compared to August 2022. The downturn was felt across various retail sectors, including automotive fuels (-3.0% MoM), food (-1.2% MoM), and non-food (-0.9% MoM) sales. Among EU member states, Portugal, France, and Belgium registered the largest monthly decreases in retail trade volume, while Luxembourg, Poland, and Denmark saw increases.

From Eurostat

The downtrend in retail sales in the euro area is becoming more apparent. The latest decline puts sales volumes at the lowest since 2021. While recent declines have been lead by fuel, the more important areas are negative as well. A continuation of the trend in September will see the consumption component be a drag on Q3 GDP.