Retail Sales Decreased 30.6% In April 2020

August 19, 2020 | 5 Comments

The overall volume of retail sales decreased 30.6% in April — when there were extensive restrictions due to the pandemic — and while most sectors saw substantial drops, such as apparel stores which decreased 97.1%, food and liquor sales were up, with food up 17.5%, while liquor sales were up 39.1%.

These statistics were contained in the April 2020 Retail Sales Index publication from the Department of Statistics.

Minister for the Cabinet Office Wayne Furbert explained, “After adjusting for the retail sales rate of inflation, measured at 0.8 per cent in April, the overall volume of retail sales decreased 30.6 per cent when compared to April 2019.

“Retail sales activity in April 2020 was affected by Coronavirus [Covid-19] restrictions such as the shelter-in-place order, curfew hours and mandatory closure of some retail establishments with the exception of permitted businesses like food stores, pharmacies and service stations.”

Chart extracted from the report:

April 2020 Retail Sales publication

The Minister thanked respondents to the retail sales survey for their continued support in providing data needed to measure the impact of the pandemic on retail activity in Bermuda.

Highlighted below are the April 2020 year-over-year changes for each of the seven local retail sectors:

  • The sales volume of liquor sales rose 39.1 per cent.
  • The sales volume of food stores increased 17.5 per cent.
  • The sales volume of motor vehicle stores fell 99.0 per cent.
  • The volume of sales at apparel stores dropped 97.1 per cent.
  • The volume of sales for building material stores decreased 82.3 per cent.
  • The sales volume of all other stores types declined 59.9 per cent.
  • The sales volume of service stations fell 59.2 per cent.

The report said, “After adjusting for the retail sales rate of inflation, measured at 0.8 per cent in April, the overall
volume of retail sales decreased 30.6 per cent when compared to April 2019. In value terms, retail sales fell 30.1 per cent to an estimated $64.3 million. Two of the seven retail sectors recorded higher sales volumes with Liquor Stores recording the largest volume increase of 39.1 per cent.”

The full April 2020 Retail Sales Index publication follows below [PDF here]:

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Comments (5)

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  1. marshmallowman says:

    Can anyone guess from Figure 1 above when the PLP came back into power?

    That’s right, it was at the tallest bar, which was getting taller every year, and is now getting shorter and shorter.

    You get what you vote for.

  2. Joe Bloggs says:

    “The overall volume of retail sales decreased 30.6% in April — when there were extensive restrictions due to the pandemic — and while most sectors saw substantial drops, such as apparel stores which decreased 97.1%, food and liquor sales were up, with food up 17.5%, while liquor sales were up 39.1%.”

    I repeat “food up 17.5%, while liquor sales were up 39.1%”. It is nice to see that some things do not change. Bermudians will be Bermudians. Go Bermuda!

    • Easy analysis says:

      We all stayed home (no driving) and ate and drank our butts off! And that’s how you analyze the results!

      • sandgrownan says:

        Well, and a healthy dose of panic buying!

      • Joe Bloggs says:

        That was not meant to be an analysis. That was merely a comment. I will leave the analysis to a qualified economist.

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