Irish Retail Sales Witness 'Steady' Growth In Q2 2019: Retail Ireland
Irish retail sales values saw 2.4% growth in the second quarter of 2019, while sales volume grew by 4.1% in the same period, according to Retail Ireland, the Ibec group that represents the retail sector in Ireland.
Sales performance for the period, which has been described as 'steady' and 'unspectacular', was mainly influenced by a relatively wet and cool summer.
Director of Retail Ireland, Thomas Burke, said, "As the country sizzled in the sustained spell of warm weather in 2018, retailers experienced a significant uptick in sales.
"This has not been matched in 2019 and many retail categories are struggling to replicate 2018’s performance as a result," he added.
The report also identified Brexit-related concerns and fears around economic overheating as other factors influencing retail sales in this period.
Burke added, "After a brief respite during late spring and early summer from almost saturation levels of Brexit coverage in the first quarter of the year, we are now again entering into a further period of intense Brexit debate ahead of the 31 October deadline.
"The trajectory of consumer sentiment has matched this public concern with an initial recovery over the late spring and summer period now subsiding as consumers begin to reflect once more on how Brexit might impact their personal finances. This has led to a softening in sales and is a cause for concern as the sector looks toward its busiest period of the year," he explained.
Supermarkets, Convenience Stores
Supermarkets and convenience stores reported strong year-on-year growth in value and volume for the six months to June 2019.
However, month-on-month figures for the segment declined between May and June 2019, according to the report.
Burke speculated that the growth target of the retail sector for the rest of the year and 2020 will be determined by the "type of Brexit" introduced.
"Our consumer is now hyper-conscious of the negative impact a no-deal Brexit could have on their personal finances and that means they are likely to react quickly to any sub-optimum outcome. We too must plan for the worst but hope for the best," he added.
© 2019 European Supermarket Magazine – your source for the latest retail news. Article by Dayeeta Das. Click subscribe to sign up to ESM: European Supermarket Magazine.