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Apr 25, 2024

February retail sales see minimal change

Retail sales decreased 0.1 percent to $66.7 billion in February, says Statistics Canada. Sales were down in five of nine subsectors and were led by decreases at gasoline stations and fuel vendors (-2.2 percent). Core retail sales – which exclude gasoline stations and fuel vendors and motor vehicle and parts dealers – were unchanged in February. In volume terms, retail sales decreased 0.3 percent in February.


Core retail sales were unchanged in February. Higher receipts were reported at general merchandise retailers (+1.1 percent) and, to a lesser extent, health and personal care retailers (+0.4 percent).

For February, sales at furniture, home furnishings, electronics, and appliances retailers (-1.5 percent), clothing, clothing accessories, shoes, jewelry, luggage, and leather goods retailers decreased (-1.0 percent), as did sales at building material and garden equipment and supplies dealers (-0.4 percent). Year over year, building material and garden equipment and supplies dealers sales decreased 0.7 percent to $3.87 billion in February.


Retail sales decreased in seven provinces. The largest provincial decrease was observed in Alberta (-1.1 percent), led by lower sales at motor vehicle and parts dealers. In Ontario, retail sales decreased 0.2 percent, led by lower sales at gasoline stations and fuel vendors. The largest provincial increase in retail sales in February was observed in British Columbia (+1.2 percent). The increase was led by higher sales at motor vehicle and parts dealers.


On a seasonally adjusted basis, retail e-commerce sales were up 1.9 percent to $3.8 billion in February, accounting for 5.7 percent of total retail trade, compared with 5.6 percent in January.

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