Statistics on the dynamics of retail sales in the euro area in February were better than the forecast of analysts. Sales increased by 3% compared to the previous month, with forecast growth of 1.5%.
On an annualized basis, retail sales declined 2.9%. Analysts had expected them to decline by 5.4%. Sales of goods belonging to the non-food group increased by 6.8%. Fuel sales in the euro area rose by 3.7%. At the same time, sales of food products decreased by 1.1%. Retail sales in the European Union increased by 2.9% month-on-month in February. Compared to the same month in 2020, they decreased by 2.2%.
The leaders in terms of sales growth in monthly terms were such countries as Austria, Slovenia, and Italy. The largest decline was recorded in Malta.
Compared to February of the previous year, the highest growth rate of retail sales was observed in Belgium, Austria, and Croatia. At the same time, Portugal, Slovakia, and Malta showed the highest rates of decline in retail sales.