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Solid rise in retail sales in March


Whilst the high sales increase in March is undoubtedly evidence of Poles’ continued strong propensity to spend on consumption (consumer sentiment in Poland is weak but it has not deteriorated any further over the past few months), in our view it was boosted by pre-Easter buying (Easter fell in early April this year, which pushed more holiday sales into March) and by a lower base of comparison. In April, which was characterised by a very high comparative base, retail sales are likely to have slowed significantly. And though the Euro 2012 football championships co-hosted by Poland are set to stimulate consumption in the second quarter of the year, we forecast that in 2012 as a whole retail sales growth will slow to 9.8%, weighed down by high inflation and unemployment rates, sluggish growth of the wage bill, tougher access to credit, and fears of an economic downturn.

Paweł Sionko
Construction Market Analyst, PMR

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