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Indonesia retail sales down first time in six years

Indonesia retail sales down first time in six years

Retail sales in Indonesia declined 3.3% in July 2017, compared to last year, according to a central bank survey released this week, marking the first drop in retail sales in nearly six years.

Food and beverage sales, as well as home furnishing and electronic appliances were particularly weak in July, Bank Indonesia wrote in the survey report.

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The news follows a strong result in June for the month, were retail sales grew 6.3% on a yearly basis.

The last month to show a contraction was September 2011, when sales were 5.9% below a year earlier, said BI.

Compared to previous years, consumption has been weak in Indonesia.

Typically, strong sales occur ahead of the holidays at the end of the Muslim fasting month, followed by a period of weak consumption. This year, the fasting month ended in late June.

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The same survey – made up of 700 retailers in 10 major cities – went on to project retail sales in August would make a come back for a 5.3% gain on last year.

Prices are expected to increase in the next three to six months, followed by better sales in January 2018, the survey found.