All Provinces See Retail Sale Gains

Retail sales were up 2.1 per cent to $57.2 billion in August, led by higher sales at food and beverage stores (4.8 per cent), gasoline stations (3.8 per cent), and clothing and clothing accessories stores (3.9 per cent), says Statistics Canada. Sales were up in every province and increased in nine of 11 subsectors, representing 94.6 per cent of retail trade. Core retail sales – which exclude gasoline stations and motor vehicle and parts dealers – were up 2.7 per cent. In volume terms, retail sales increased 1.4 per cent in August. Higher sales at building material and garden equipment and supplies dealers (2.8 per cent) also contributed to the growth in core retail. The increase in this subsector was the first since the record-breaking level recorded in March 2021 and followed four consecutive months of declines. Lower sales were reported at furniture and home furnishings stores (2.4 per cent). The decrease was the largest among all subsectors and was driven by lower sales at furniture stores (2.7 per cent), which coincided with supply constraints on retailers within this subsector. On a seasonally adjusted basis, retail eCommerce sales rose 3.2 per cent in August. On an unadjusted basis, retail eCommerce sales were down 2.9 per cent year over year to $3 billion in August, accounting for 4.9 per cent of total retail trade. The share of eCommerce sales out of total retail sales increased 0.3 percentage points in August compared with July.