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Hong Kong unrest leads to largest-ever drop in retail sales

The Hong Kong Retail Management Association (HKRMA) has said total retail sales there fell by 23% in August compared to the same month last year.

It said this was largest decline for a single month on record, even worse than the decline in September 1998 at the height of the Asian Financial Crisis.

Official figures show retail sales for August 2019 of just over HK$29.3 billion. Sales of clothing, footwear and allied products were down by 32.1% compared to August 2018. HKRMA said it expects the drop in retail sales to continue in the coming months owing to “the substantial drop in inbound tourists and weak local consumption sentiment”.

Unrest began in Hong Kong on March 31, with large-scale protests beginning in June. 
HKRMA has forecast that September and October will show an even worse drop than August’s. For example, member companies have indicated that as many as 80% of their stores were closed on October 1 owing to city-wide protests.

Image: Wing1990hk 





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