Retail sales are back on the rise in Canada post-lockdown
Despite the fact that a number of Canadian stores have had to permanently shutter brick-and-mortar locations amid massive restructuring post-COVID-lockdown, things for the country's retail industry as a whole — which was one of the worst impacted by the health crisis — are on the up again.
According to new data from Statistics Canada, retail sales were up 18.7 per cent in May and another estimated 24.5 per cent in June after unprecedented losses during forced closures in March and April.
The month-over-month rebounds were in 10 of 11 trade subsectors — with the exception of food and beverage stores due to the fact that they were so busy in April — led by clothing, accessories, general merchandise and auto parts stores.
Gains have also been taking place across every province and territory, with shoppers getting out and back into stores the most in Ontario and Quebec.
Online sales, meanwhile, are still high, up more than a whopping 110 per cent since last May.
Despite the uptick in in-person purchases, the May retail trade numbers still remain 20 per cent below pre-pandemic levels, while the economic blow of the past few months has meant the loss of some or even all Aldo, Le Chateau, David's Tea, Victoria's Secret, Bath & Body Works, Mendocino, Microsoft, Starbucks, Henry's, Stokes, Addition Elle, Thyme Maternity, Jack & Jones and other stores.
Still, now that provinces are in their later stages of reopening after lockdown, given the fact that consumers have been waiting for hours to crowd into their favourite stores, people seem ready to get back to somewhat normal again by hitting the malls and spending some money — which our floundering economy can certainly use right now.
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