Canadian retail sales closed the year on a down note, falling 0.8 per cent in December. That broke a string of three consecutive monthly increases. Sales fell in 6 of 11 sub-sectors representing 42 per cent of total retail trade. For all of 2017, Canadian retail sales were up 6.7 per cent. With today's data release, we are tracking Q4 Canadian economic growth at 2.2 per cent.
In BC, retail sales declined 0.6 per cent on a monthly basis but were up 10.6 per cent compared to December 2016. For the year, BC retail sales grew at 9.6 per cent, the fastest rate of annual growth in over two decades. That jump in consumer spending was a main contributor to a robust provincial economy, which we forecast grew 3.8 per cent in 2017.
Copyright British Columbia Real Estate Association. Reprinted with permission.