Retail sales climb 3% in July
Retail sales in Hungary rose 2.5% per year in July, or 3.0% after adjusting for calendar year effects, according to preliminary data released by the Central Statistical Office (KSH) on Friday. .
The increase slowed to 6.2 percent in the previous month. Retail sales have grown for four consecutive months after falling eight months, KSH said.
Adjusted food sales increased 3.7 percent and non-food sales increased 2.6 percent. Sales of motor fuel increased 1.9%.
In January-July, retail sales rose 2.1% after adjusting for the calendar year, KSH said.
Commenting on the data, a government official said Hungary’s retail sector was starting to recover from lockdowns linked to the pandemic. Peter Cseresnyes, State Secretary at the Ministry of Innovation and Technology, said the government measures resulting in 4.7 million job holders, average salaries above 400,000 forints (1,100 EUR) and higher minimum wages left money for Hungarians to spend on themselves. Barring another strong wave of the pandemic, current moderate growth is expected to reach pre-pandemic levels by the end of the year, he said. The growing acceptance of vaccines is also key to this process, he added.