By Muhammed Ali Gurtas
ANKARA (AA) – The European Union's statistical office announced Wednesday the eurozone retail trade volume saw a monthly decline in August.
"In August 2018 compared with July 2018, the seasonally adjusted volume of retail trade decreased by 0.2 percent in the euro area [EA19] and remained unchanged in the EU28," Eurostat said.
The eurozone/euro area or EA19 represents member states that use the single currency — euro — while the EU28 includes all member countries of the bloc.
Official figures showed the volume of retail trade in the euro area fell by 0.6 percent for automotive fuel and by 0.3 percent for food, drinks and tobacco, while non-food products remained stable in the same period.
"In the EU28, the retail trade volume increased by 0.5 percent for non-food products, while automotive fuels fell by 0.9 percent and food, drinks and tobacco by 0.3 percent," the statistical office said.
Eurostat noted that the largest decreases in the total retail trade volume were registered in Latvia — down 1.2 percent –, followed by Poland and France as the volume went down 0.7 percent in both countries.
"The highest increases were observed in Sweden [up 1.2 percent], Portugal [up 1.1 percent], as well as Ireland, Hungary and Slovenia [all up one percent]," it said.
– Annual figures
Eurostat said that the calendar adjusted retail sales index surged 1.8 percent in the euro area and 2.4 percent in the EU28 in August compared with the same month last year.
The statistical office noted that the eurozone retail trade volume increased by 2.9 percent for non-food products and by 0.9 percent for food, drinks and tobacco, while automotive fuel fell by 0.3 percent year-on-year.
"In the EU28, the retail trade volume increased by 3.5 percent for non-food products and 1.3 percent for food, drinks and tobacco, while automotive fuel remained stable," it said.
On a yearly basis, the highest increases in the total retail trade volume was registered in Ireland with a 7.9-percent hike.
The only annual drop in retail trade volume — among member states for which data are available — was seen in Malta with a fall of 2.1 percent.