Budapest, September 3 (MTI) – Retail sales in Hungary climbed by an annual 7.0 percent in July, preliminary data released by the Central Statistical Office (KSH) on Thursday show.
The increase was the same when adjusted for calendar year effects.
The unadjusted rise was slightly down from 7.2 percent in June.
Adjusted food sales climbed by 6.3 percent in July, non-food sales were up by 7.2 percent and fuel sales increased by 8.3 percent.
In January-July 2015, retail sales were up by an unadjusted 6.2 percent and an adjusted 6.3 percent.
KSH noted that legislation requiring most big retailers to remain closed on Sundays came into force in the middle of March, but said that more time and data were needed to gauge the effects of the new rule.
Takarekbank chief analyst Andras Oszlay said the July retail sales growth was over the 5.8 percent consensus as well as the bank’s 6.3 percent estimate. A crackdown on the shadow economy could play a significant role in the increase, he added.
ING senior analyst Andras Balatoni projected full-year retail sales growth of 5.8 percent.
Economy ministry state secretary Bela Glattfelder said the July retail sales growth was the largest monthly increase of the past two years. He said the data clearly indicate that retail sales growth is accelerating and that it remains unaffected by Sunday retail closures. Glattfelder said sales growth was boosted by households’ increased disposable income.
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