Retail sales: Canadian shoppers have calmed down

And that’s a good thing

(Eric Thayer/Reuters)

To recap:

  • Retail sales edged up 0.2 per cent in November, the fifth consecutive month of increases, Statistics Canada said this morning.
  • Most of the growth came from autos and auto parts, which recorded a healthy 1.8 per cent increase, as well as electronics and appliances, whereas most other store types registered declines.
  • In terms of volume, sales were up 0.8 per cent.
  • October retail activity was revised down to 0.5 per cent from a previous estimate of 0.7 per cent.

What the analysts are saying: 

  • CIBC’s Emanuella Enenajor credited Black Friday for Canadians spending on electronics, home furnishing, sporting goods and hobby stores, and generous discounting for contributing to relatively high sales volumes.
  • TD’s Leslie Preston calculated that, with the downward revision for October, consumer spending in the last three months of the year will likely come in at 1.9 per cent, a much more subdued pace than the 3.8 per cent registered between July and September. That’s all good, though: slower spending will help households draw down their debt, while low interest rates and a decent labour market will ensure Canadians don’t suppress their shopping instincts entirely.  

 




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