Today’s release of the November Retail Sales Index has some reasonably positive news (which was also seen in EU data released by Eurostat earlier). Excluding motor trades Irish retail sales edged higher in November, though the effect was stronger for volume than for value.
The annual changes also improved with the volume series showing a 1.6 percent increase from a 1.8 percent decrease in October, though it must be remembered that some of the recent volatility in these is down to comparisons being with 2012 at a time when the “digital switchover’ led to an increase in electrical goods sales.
Of course, it the December figures that really matter. Last year, Retail Excellence Ireland claimed that the run up to Christmas 2012 was "the best in five years”. This was not reflected in the subsequent CSO data.
This year, REI were more muted in their analysis of the pre-Christmas spree but they were back on message fairly quickly declaring that St. Stephen’s Day was the start of the “biggest sales success since Christmas 2008.” Whatever the official figures from the CSO reveal about December REI can claim to have seen it coming.Tweet