Daily News Hungary economy

Retail sales in Hungary grew by an annual 4.2 percent in July, slowing from an annual increase of 5.2 percent in the previous month, the Central Statistical Office (KSH) said in a second reading of data released on Friday.

The calendar-adjusted figure was the same as the unadjusted figure.

Adjusted food sales were up 1.9 percent in July and non-food sales climbed by 7.5 percent, while fuel sales increased by 3.4 percent.

In the first seven months of the year, retail sales were up an annual 3.9 percent, according to adjusted data.

Adjusted food sales for January-July were up an annual 2.2 percent

and non-food sales climbed by 6.6 percent, while fuel sales rose by 3.4 percent.

Gyula Pomázi, deputy state secretary of the economy ministry, told public television after the data release that higher retail turnover was linked to growing wages coupled with higher household savings.

After a period of putting away money, households can afford big ticket items and home improvements, he added.

The Economy Ministry said in a statement that the expansion in retail trade in July had once again outstripped the European Union average.

The 7.5 percent increase in non-food sales showed that after a period of belt-tightening during the economic crisis, households are now prepared to spend more on sustainable consumer goods. Continued growth and a strong rebound in lending are also aiding growth in household consumption, and goverment measures support this development, the statement said.

Source: MTI

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