07 January 2022
Go to release: Retail Sales Index November 2021
The Central Statistics Office (CSO) has today (07 January 2022) released the Retail Sales Index November 2021 (Provisional) October 2021 (Final).
Commenting on the release, Stephanie Kelleher, Statistician, said: "Retail sales increased by 0.6% in November 2021 compared with October 2021. On an annual basis, retail volumes were 16.3% higher than in November 2020. When comparing November 2021 with November of the previous year, it should be noted that the country was under Level 5 COVID-19 restrictions for the whole of November 2020 with only essential retail open. As a result of these restrictions, the volume of retail sales fell by 12.0% in November 2020 compared to the previous month (October 2020).
Looking at the monthly changes, in November 2021 the largest volume increases in sales were recorded in Hardware, Paints & Glass (+16.3%) and Clothing & Footwear (+14.1%). The largest reductions in the volume of sales were in Bars (-23.3%) and Furniture & Lighting (-12.4%).
The exceptionally high annual volume increase in Bars (+800%) reflects the Level 5 COVID-19 restrictions in November 2020, when Bars were closed expect for ancillary activities such as office licence sales. Despite this significant increase, the volume of sales in Bars is still 29.2% below the level of November 2019. Other sectors to show large increases in volume compared to November 2020 included Clothing & Footwear (+212%), Furniture & Lighting (+44.6%) and Department Stores (+39.8%)."
Providing further analysis of the figures, Stephanie Kelleher said: "To help our users we have included a new Table 3a and Figure 3a which compares November 2021 retail sales to pre COVID-19 levels in November 2019. The volume of retail sales in November 2021 was 10.9% higher than November 2019. Several sectors showed significant changes compared to their corresponding level of sales in November 2019. The highest increases were seen in Electrical Goods (+48.7%), Clothing & Footwear (+32.0%), Pharmaceuticals, Medical & Cosmetic Articles (+28.2%), Food, Beverages & Tobacco (Specialised Stores) (+24.3%) and Hardware, Paints & Glass (+20.3%). Please note that in 2019 'Black Friday' occurred in the December reporting period while it fell in the November reporting period in both 2020 and 2021.
The largest decreases in the volume of sales in November 2021 when compared to November 2019 levels, were Bars (-29.2%) and Books, Newspapers & Stationery (-11.6%).
The proportion of retail sales transacted online (from Irish registered companies) was 6.2% in November 2021 compared to 5.5% in October 2021, 12.4% in November 2020 and 4.0% in November 2019.
We would like to note that despite difficult circumstances, many retailers have continued to supply the CSO with information each month and we wish to thank all respondents for their ongoing support. The CSO can only compile such comprehensive releases ... Because You told Us."
Stephanie Kelleher (+353) 21 453 5123
or email Business_Stats@cso.ie
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