Consumer goods sales rose sharply in the summer, according to a consulting firm
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Retail trade in Russia this summer surpassed the levels reached prior to Ukraine-related Western sanctions, according to a study by consulting firm FinExpertiza based on data from Russian state statistics agency Rosstat.
Analysts noted a decline in retail sales from April 2022 following the start of Moscow’s military operation in Ukraine and subsequent sanctions, which led to Russians “reducing unnecessary spending and building up cash cushions for the future.”
Retail turnover dropped for 12 consecutive months until March 2023, before beginning to bounce back in April. According to the study, sales surpassed pre-conflict levels in July.
“Consumption of goods by the population has now surpassed the pre-crisis 2021 levels… In July, retail trade turnover reached 4 trillion rubles ($41.6 billion), which is 10.5% higher than in July 2022 and 1.2% higher than in July 2021, adjusted for inflation,” analysts wrote.
The study stated that food sales in Russia in the reporting period grew by 4.2% year-on-year, while non-food sales surged by 17.7%. The turnover of food products increased by 2.4% compared to 2021, while non-food turnover grew by 0.3%.
According to the analysis, retail trade growth has been uneven across the country. While regions such as Ingushetia, Kabardino-Balkaria, Novosibirsk, Dagestan, and several others have shown significant increases in consumer goods sales, roughly half of Russia’s regions are recovering at a slower pace, notably Sevastopol, Crimea, Astrakhan, Bryansk, Belgorod, and Moscow Region.