During the first half of 2021 there was a progressive increase in retail sales compared to the latter part of last year. To reveal it is theIstat, which underlines how the slight cyclical growth in the first quarter was followed by an acceleration in the second. The positive trend, explains in a note theStatistical Institute, was mainly determined by the increase in sales of non-food goods, which still do not fully recover the levels prior to the crisis: in June the index of this sector, net of seasonal factors, was 2.2% lower than the February 2020.
In June theIstat estimates a slight economic growth for retail sales (+ 0.7% in value and + 0.6% in volume). Sales are on the rise food goods (+ 1.1% in value and volume) and those of non-food items (+ 0.3% in value and volume). In the second quarter of 2021, in quarterly terms, retail sales increased by 2.7% in value and 2.9% in volume. The growth is large for non-food goods (+ 4.4% in value and + 4.8% in volume), more contained for foodstuffs (+ 0.6% in value and + 0.5% in volume). On a trend basis, in June, retail sales increased by 7.7% in value and 8.1% in volume. Also in this case, the positive trend is particularly strong for sales of non-food goods (+ 11.9% in value and volume) and more moderate for food (+ 2.5% in value and + 3.0% by volume).
Among non-food goods, positive trend changes were recorded for almost all product groups with the exception of Games, toys, sports and camping (-4.6%) and Furniture, textiles and furnishings (-0.2%). The biggest increases relate to Clothing and fur (+ 24.5%), Footwear, leather and travel items (+ 19.2%) and Household appliances, radios, TVs and tape recorders (+ 19.0%). Compared to June 2020, the value of retail sales increases in all distribution channels: large-scale distribution (+ 3.3%), businesses operating on small surfaces (+ 10.9%), sales outside of stores (+ 4.2%) and e-commerce (+ 23.7%).