Singapore retail sales ease slump in June with slower 27.8% fall on phased reopening of shops, F&B dine-in

Takings at the till dropped 27.8 per cent year on year in June, down from a record 52 per cent in May. ST PHOTO: MARK CHEONG

SINGAPORE - The worst may be over for Singapore retail sales, with the reopening of shops and resumption of dining in for food and beverage outlets after the end of the circuit breaker period in June.

Retail sales in June fell but at a slower pace than before, according to data from the Department of Statistics on Wednesday (Aug 5).

Takings at the till slid 27.8 per cent compared with the same period last year, after sinking a record 52 per cent in May and 40.3 per cent in April.

Excluding motor vehicles, retail sales fell 24.2 per cent.

This is on the back of the gradual reopening of the economy, as Singapore entered phase one on June 2 and phase two on June 19.

Year on year, retail sales have slumped for the 17th straight month in June.

But compared to May, seasonally adjusted retail sales recorded a huge upswing, rising by 51.1 per cent. Excluding motor vehicles, takings sales increased 43.1 per cent month on month in June.

“The month-on-month growths were mainly attributed to the low base in May when physical stores were closed for the entire month during the circuit breaker period,” Singstat said.

Sales were lifted by supermarkets and hypermarkets, which continued to register strong takings, with an increase of 43.4 per cent.

Computer and telecommunications equipment retailers also saw sales rise, by 20.9 per cent, with the demand from consumers working from home.

Minimarts and convenience stores had higher sales of 8.7 per cent.

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But all other categories still registered double-digit drops, with department stores bearing the brunt of the fallout from the pandemic as they saw sales plunge 69.5 per cent.

Sales of wearing apparel and footwear fell 63.4 per cent, while takings from watches and jewellery retailers slid 53.5 per cent.

Motor vehicle sales fell 47.8 per cent, while sales of food and alcohol dropped 45.7 per cent.

Meanwhile, sales of F&B services slid by 43.5 per cent in June, a slight improvement over the 50.1 per cent decline in May.

All categories registered drops, with restaurants leading the way with a fall of 59 per cent.

Takings for food caterers fell 48.1 per cent, while cafes, foodcourts and other eating places saw sales fall by 32. 7 per cent.

Fast-food outlets registered a drop in sales of 20.5 per cent.

The total sales value of F&B services in June was estimated at $496 million. Of these, online F&B sales made up an estimated 32.7 per cent.

The estimated total retail sales value in June was about $2.6 billion.

Of these, online retail sales made up an estimated 18.1 per cent.

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