Estonian people continued to shop less as they reduced the spending on groceries amid high inflation and slower wage growth, preliminary retail sales data for October showed Tuesday.
Retail sales decreased 4 percent year-on-year following a 6.0 percent fall in September, Statistics Estonia in Tallinn said.
“The decrease in retail trade turnover in October was influenced the most by grocery stores, where turnover fell by 7 percent year on year,” Statistics Estonia analyst Johanna Pihlak said.
Estonia’s consumer price inflation eased for the second successive month in October, though it remained strong overall at 23 percent, official data showed earlier in the month.
Statistics Estonia reported last week that the annual growth in average gross wages and salaries slowed to 8.1 percent in the third quarter from 10.1 percent in the previous three months.
Sales of manufactured goods dropped 4 percent year-on-year, led by a 14 percent slump in sales in stores selling household goods and appliances, hardware and building materials.
Department store sales shrunk around 6 percent and those of pharmaceutical and cosmetics stores dropped 4 percent.
Meanwhile, sales of computers and their accessories, books, sports equipment, games and toys increased compared to a year ago.
Automotive fuel sales grew 6 percent annually in October.
Compared to the previous month, retail sales were unchanged in October, while on a seasonally and working day adjusted basis they fell 1 percent.