Mexican retail sales rose in November by a seasonally-adjusted
0.8%, just enough to erase their revised declines of 0.1% in
October and 0.6% in September. On an unadjusted,
constant-price basis, sales in November were up 1.2% from the same
month one year earlier. The retail subsectors posting
year-over-year sales gains in November were on-line and catalogs;
food, beverages, and tobacco; recreational, paper, and personal
products; healthcare; and department stores.
At the wholesale level, sales rose 0.3% in November, after a
rise of 0.8% in October. Nevertheless, sales at the wholesale
level were down 0.3% year-over-year.
Comment: Mexican retail sales
continue to trend upward, and the rebound in November is consistent
with my suggestion last month that the softness in late autumn
probably only represented consumers taking a breather from their
summer shopping spree and preparing for the big holiday sales
coming up. Since the Mexican labor market seems to have
firmed significantly in the second half of 2014, with unemployment
falling markedly, I would expect further gains in consumer
confidence and retail demand going forward.
Patrick Fearon, CFA
Vice President, Fund Management