The pace of Hong Kong retail sales growth is tapering off.
The Census and Statistics Department (C&SD) estimates total sales at HK$38.9 billion in July, 7.8 per cent higher than the same month last year. That follows a revised estimate of 11.9 per cent in June.
For the first seven months of his year, Hong Kong retail sales rose by 12.6 per cent.
However after netting out price changes year on year, the growth was 5.9 per cent for the month and 9.8 per cent year to date.
A government spokesman said that while retail sales grew at a decelerated pace there was still solid demand from local consumers as well as visitors.
The biggest contributing category to Hong Kong’s overall sales – watches, jewellery and valuable gifts – posted a 16.8 per cent increase. Cosmetics rose by 12.7 per cent.
However there was less movement in more localised categories: supermarket sales rose by just 0.7 per cent, apparel by 3.4 per cent, department store sales by 8.6 per cent, food, liquor and tobacco by 3 per cent, and footwear and accessories by 5.5 per cent. Optical shop sales rose by 2.3 per cent, Chinese medicines by 0.8 per cent and electrical goods and other consumer durables by 5.7 per cent.
The only category to decline in July was books, newspapers, stationery and gifts, down 1.4 per cent.