Retail sales rise in April led by gasoline stations and food retailers

Retail sales increased 0.7% in April, with Alberta seeing the largest provincial gain at 3.1

Retail sales rise in April led by gasoline stations and food retailers

According to Statistics Canada, retail sales increased 0.7 percent to $66.8bn in April, with gains in seven of nine subsectors.

Gasoline stations, fuel vendors, and food and beverage retailers led the growth.

Core retail sales, excluding gasoline stations, fuel vendors, and motor vehicle and parts dealers, rose 1.4 percent in April. In volume terms, retail sales increased 0.5 percent.

Gasoline stations and fuel vendors saw the largest sales increase in April, rising 4.5 percent, marking their first rise in three months. In volume terms, these sales grew by 1.7 percent.

Motor vehicle and parts dealers experienced the largest decline, with sales dropping 2.2 percent due to a 2.9 percent fall at new car dealers. However, automotive parts, accessories, and tire retailers recorded a 1.6 percent increase.

Core retail sales rose 1.4 percent in April, driven by a 1.9 percent increase at food and beverage retailers. Supermarkets and other grocery retailers (excluding convenience stores) saw a 1.6 percent gain. Beer, wine, and liquor retailers contributed with a 5.5 percent rise, their first in four months.

Sporting goods, hobby, musical instrument, book, and miscellaneous store retailers reported a 3.4 percent increase in sales. Health and personal care retailers saw a 1.9 percent rise.

Eight provinces experienced higher retail sales in April. Alberta led with a 3.1 percent increase, driven by higher sales at motor vehicle and parts dealers. Ontario saw the largest decline, with sales falling 1.0 percent due to lower sales at motor vehicle and parts dealers. In Toronto, sales decreased 2.5 percent.

Retail e-commerce sales in Canada, on a seasonally adjusted basis, fell 0.1 percent to $4bn in April, accounting for 6.0 percent of total retail trade.

Statistics Canada’s advance estimate suggests a 0.6 percent decrease in retail sales for May. This early estimate, based on responses from 47.5 percent of surveyed companies, will be revised. The average final response rate for the survey over the past 12 months was 90.3 percent.