Retail trade turnover increased in Croatia in annual terms and decreased in monthly terms in March, the Croatian Bureau of Statistics (DZS) reported on April 30. Year-over-year data showed that business day-adjusted retail sales grew in real terms by 14.3% y / y, accelerating from a 3.8% y / y increase. a the previous month.
March 2020 was the first month in which retail was significantly affected by the coronavirus pandemic (COVID-19) after the first cases in the country were confirmed in February 2020 and a lockdown was imposed in March.
A breakdown by sectors showed a return to normal after the trade disruption in March 2020 amid panic buying of food and health products, while shoppers avoided other types of consumer goods.
Compared to March 2020, revenue growth was recorded in nine business lines, representing 55.3% of total revenue. The largest increases in nominal sales were recorded for clothing (105.5%) and for audio and video equipment, hardware, paints and glass, household appliances, furniture and other household items. (by 58.5%).
The other commercial branches, which generated 44.7% of the total turnover, recorded a decrease in turnover. The largest decline was in pharmaceutical and medicinal products, whose sales were down 7.6% year-on-year. The decrease in purchases in supermarkets and grocery stores is more modest, represented by the category “non-specialized stores predominantly food, beverages and tobacco”.
At the same time, retail trade registered a 2.4% month-on-month decline in March in real terms, including a 3.6% drop for non-food products (excluding fuels and automotive lubricants). Food products fell by 6.2% m / m.