Drop in December retail sales as Black Friday and Cyber Monday muscle in
THERE was a surprise drop in the value of sales in shops in December, despite other signs that the economy is getting better.
Experts said the falls were a surprise but may indicate that consumers are doing the bulk of their Christmas shopping early, encouraged by the growing popularity of marketing events like Black Friday and Cyber Monday, both of which fell in November last year.
The value of sales was down 0.8pc in December when compared with the previous month, the Central Statistics Office said.
However, when compared with the same month a year earlier the value of sales was up 3.5pc.
If motor sales are excluded, there was a decrease of 0.9pc in the value of retail sales and an annual increase of 3pc, the CSO said.
The volume of retail sales fell by 0.7pc in the month of December, according to the CSO. When compared with the figure for December 2014, the volume of sales increased by 6.3pc.