German Retail Sales Unexpectedly Rise In November

Germany’s retail sales rose for a second straight month in November, defying expectations for a decline, preliminary data from Destatis showed Tuesday.

Retail sales increased a calendar and seasonally adjusted 0.6 percent from the previous month. Economists had forecast a 0.5 percent fall.

In October, sales grew a revised 0.5 percent.

Sales of food, beverages and tobacco products grew 0.9 percent from the previous month. Supermarkets and hypermarkets sales rose 0.8 percent.

Food store sales decreased 0.3 percent, while non-food store sales grew 0.6 percent. Clothing and footwear sales and sales of home appliances declined.

Retail sales were real 5.9 percent higher compared to the pre-Covid crisis month of February 2020, Destatis said.

Compared to a year ago, retail sales decreased an adjusted 2.9 percent in November. Economists had expected a 4.9 percent slump.

On a non-adjusted basis, retail sales declined 0.2 percent year-on-year in November after a 3.3 percent fall in the previous month. Sales fell for a third straight month.

The reasons for the real decline in sales compared to the same month of the previous year could be the supply bottlenecks in retail and the sharp rise in retail prices, the statistical office added. Further, Destatis data showed that internet and mail order business logged an adjusted 3.1 percent monthly fall despite discounts for “Black Friday” and “Cyber Monday”. That said, internet and mail order sales were 30.3 percent higher than the pre-pandemic level of February 2020.

Destatis estimated that retail sales hit a record high in 2021, growing a real 0.9 percent and a nominal 3.1 percent from 2020.