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Retail Sales Show Mixed Results: Annual Growth Strong but Monthly Change Minimal

ECONOMYRetail Sales Show Mixed Results: Annual Growth Strong but Monthly Change Minimal

Retail sales at constant prices in May 2024 were 5% higher than a year ago. However, compared to April of this year, they fell by 0.1%, according to the Central Statistical Office (GUS).

The mixed data on retail sales presents a clear picture: on one hand, we see a significant annual growth of 5%, while on the other hand, monthly sales have almost stabilized. Detailed data explains this situation well. It turns out that the main driver of year-on-year sales growth is vehicle sales. The broadly understood automotive sector is the main driving force of the economy this year, both in production and sales.

Considering that in Poland, on average, about 70% of cars are purchased by companies, private consumption is not as robust as we would all hope. A glimmer of hope lies in the “other” category, where year-on-year growth is 23.5%, just slightly lower than the growth rate of car sales.

Nonetheless, consumption will drive GDP this year. June is likely to bring further growth in the automotive sector and other products, and may also see an increase in the sales of electronic equipment.

Commentary by Mariusz Zielonka, economic expert at Lewiatan.

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