Czech Retail Sales Continue to Decline

Retail sales in the Czech Republic have declined for the thirteenth consecutive month. According to revised data released by the Czech Statistical Office (CZSO), retail sales in May showed a year-on-year decline of 6.1%, a slight improvement from April’s decline of 8.4%. However, monthly sales increased by 0.5%.

Compared to May of last year, non-food product sales decreased by 9.2%, while food product sales decreased by 6.4%. On the other hand, sales of motor fuels increased by 11.5%.

The CZSO reported that all types of stores, except those specializing in computer and communication equipment and pharmaceutical and medical products, had lower sales. Sales also increased for non-specialized stores with a predominance of non-food products.

Sales of household products decreased by 16.2% in stores, sales of clothing and footwear decreased by 12.4%, sales of sporting goods decreased by 7.2%, and sales of toiletries decreased by 2.6%. On the other hand, sales of computers and communication devices increased by 2.6%, and sales by pharmacies increased by 1.4%.

Sales of food products decreased by 6.5% in non-specialized stores with a predominance of food products and by 3.6% in specialized food stores. Sales of internet and mail-order stores declined year-on-year for the seventeenth time, this time by 8%.

Sales and repairs of motor vehicles increased by 2.3% year-on-year in May. Customers paid 2.7% more for motor vehicles, including spare parts than a year ago. Repair sales increased by 0.7%.

The decline in retail sales in the Czech Republic has been ongoing for over a year and is a significant concern for the country’s economy. Companies are struggling to recover from the financial impact of the COVID-19 pandemic, and the CZSO’s data suggests that consumers are still hesitant to spend.