MexECON Blog

September Retail Sales Fall 0.4 Percent

Mexican retail sales fell by a seasonally-adjusted 0.4% during September, after a revised 1.5% decline in August.  That marked the first back-to-back decreases since 2009.  On an unadjusted, constant-price basis, sales in September were down a sharp 4.0% from the same month one year earlier.  The retail subsectors posting year-over-year declines in September were department stores; clothing, footwear, and textile goods; recreational, paper, and personal products; healthcare; furniture, domestic appliances, and computers; food and beverages; motor vehicles, fuels, and lubricants; and metal and glass products.

At the wholesale level, September sales slumped 2.7%, after a revised August decline of 2.5%.  That marked the worst wholesale sales declines since mid-2011.  Wholesale receipts in September were down 7.3% year-over-year.

The report was released today by INEGI, the official statistics agency

Comment:  Although the Mexican Finance Ministry has released figures suggesting Mexico's economy returned to growth in the third quarter after a decline in the second quarter, weak reports such as today's make me skeptical.  We'll have to see what comes up when the official, detailed figures for third-quarter gross domestic product (GDP) are released on Thursday.  In any case, the continued weakness in demand at the retail and wholesale levels serves as a reminder that the Mexican economy is facing some stiff headwinds.

Patrick Fearon, CFA
Vice President, Fund Management

                                                           Mexican Retail Sales
                                               Seasonally Adjusted, 2003 = 100
                                                               Source:  INEGI
Retail Sales 1309

                                                       Mexican Wholesale Sales
                                                 Seasonally Adjusted, 2003 = 100
                                                               Source:  INEGI
Wholesale Sales 1309

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