CN: Retail Sales

Mon Jan 19 20:00:00 CST 2015

Consensus Actual Previous
Y/Y % Change 11.7% 11.9% 11.7%
M/M % Change 1.01% 0.89%

December retail sales were up a greater than expected 11.9 percent from a year ago. Analysts expected an increase of 11.7 percent. For the year, sales were up 12.0 percent after increasing 13.1 percent in 2013. On the month, sales were up 1.01 percent. Urban retail sales were up 11.8 percent after gaining 11.6 percent in November. Rural sales slipped to a reading of 12.4 percent after increasing 12.5 percent the month before.

Household nondurables slipped to an increase of 12.2 percent after rising 15.2 percent in November. Clothing sales increased 10.6 percent after jumping 13.4 percent the month before. However, home appliance sales improved to an increase of 12.6 percent from 11.3 percent. Furniture sales also improved, increasing 13.2 percent after 12.8 percent in November. Auto sales were up 6.1 percent after a dismal 2.0 percent gain the month before.

Retail sales are sales of a physical commodity or the income of catering services sold or provided by enterprises to individuals and social organizations for non-production and non-operation purposes.

Retail sales tend to have a muted impact because the Chinese economy is not heavily reliant on consumer spending. However, the government is trying to stimulate consumer spending to give the economy more balance. To this end, the government put into place a basket of stimulus measures, including government subsidies and tax breaks for home appliances and cars, to expand consumption to sustain the economic growth, which was slowed by a slump in exports amid the global economic downturn.