September was a good month for overall retail sales in Alberta
The growth has filled in a bit more of the hole left by the spring lockdown
By ATB Economics 23 November 2020 1 min read
After contracting by 1.5 per cent in August, seasonally adjusted monthly retail sales in Alberta grew by 2.5 per cent in September. Sales were also 3.8 per cent higher compared to the same month last year.
The growth has filled in a bit more of the hole left by the spring lockdown. But, even if the second wave of the virus doesn’t dampen retail sales over the last three months of the year, Alberta’s retail sector will still end 2020 several billion dollars behind where it was in 2019.
As of September, year-to-date sales in the province were down by $3.1 billion (5.1 per cent) compared to the same nine-month period in 2019.
Nationally, retail sales grew by 1.1 per cent in September, but were down by 4.0 per cent ($18.3 billion) on a year-to-date basis.
New car and truck dealers in Alberta had a particularly good month in September with year-over-year sales up by 15.8 per cent or $241.2 million.
Other sub-sectors that posted strong sales compared to the previous September include building material and garden stores (up 24.8 per cent or $91.8 million), health and personal care stores (up 14.8 per cent or $61.1 million) and food and beverage stores (up 9.4 per cent or $114.8 million).
Sub-sectors that saw their year-over-year sales decline in September include sporting goods, hobby, book and music stores (down 14.7 per cent or $21.2 million), used car dealers (down 11.5 per cent or $12.5 million), clothing stores (down 10.1 per cent or $35.7 million) and gas stations (down 8.2 per cent or $67.4 million).