20 Aug 2009 16:01

Retail turnover falls 8.2% in Russia in July

MOSCOW. Aug 20 (Interfax) - Retail turnover in Russia contracted 8.2% to 1.208 trillion rubles in July 2009 compared to July 2008, the biggest one-month decline recorded this year, the Federal State Statistics Service (Rosstat) said.

Retail sales increased by 10%-18% per month throughout 2008 with the exception of December, when sales only grew by 4.8%. Since February 2009, retail sales have been on the decline, falling 1.4% in February, 3% in March, 4.5% in April, 5.6% in May and 6.5% in June.

Retail turnover contracted 3.8% to 8.008 trillion rubles in January-July 2009 compared to the same period of 2008.

Registered trading organizations and individual entrepreneurs accounted for 86.5% of retail sales in July, while markets accounted for 13.5% compared to 87.1% and 12.9%, respectively, in July 2008.

Food and tobacco accounted for 46.4% of retail sales in July, while nonfood items accounted for 49% compared to 53.6% and 51%, respectively, a year ago.

Analysts from investment companies and banks polled by Interfax in late July predicted that retail sales would contract only 7.9% in July. For the year, the analysts expect retail turnover to decline 4.4%. The Economic Development Ministry said in its latest forecast that retail sales would fall 5.8% in 2009.