Retail sales started the year strong, rising 2.2 per cent on a monthly basis in January. That strength was broad-based with 10 of 11 retail sub-sectors reporting higher sales with the largest gains coming from motor vehicle and parts dealers. Although we have limited information for the first quarter, very strong economic data thus far has growth in the Canadian economy tracking at close to 4 per cent to start the year.
In BC, a robust labour market continues to fuel consumer spending with retail sales rising 2.9 per cent on a monthly basis and 6.6 per cent year-over-year in January. Retail sales grew 6.5 per cent in 2016, the second consecutive year of 6 per cent or greater growth in retail sales.
Copyright British Columbia Real Estate Association. Reprinted with permission.