Canadian retail sales fell 0.9 per cent in December, following three consecutive months of solid gains. A decline in new car sales accounted for the majority of the decline at the sub-sector level, though overall holiday sales were weaker on a monthly basis. For all of 2016, Canadian retail sales rose a healthy 3.7 per cent. Given today's data, we are currently tracking fourth quarter Canadian real GDP growth at 2 per cent.
In BC, retail sales were down 0.3 per cent on a monthly basis, but were 7.5 per cent higher year-over-year. A strong provincial economy and the creation of 72,000 jobs over the course of 2016 helped push retail sales 6.5 per cent higher for the year, the second consecutive year of 6 per cent or greater growth in retail sales.
Copyright British Columbia Real Estate Association. Reprinted with permission.