Retail sales in Singapore rose in June as improvement in employment conditions boosted consumption, encouraging purchases of luxury goods, telephones and computers.
The retail sales index rose 10.9 per cent from a year earlier, compared with a revised 9.6 per cent in May, the Statistics Department said yesterday. Excluding motor vehicles, retail sales increased 10.4 per cent in June from a year earlier.
Sales of watches and jewellery added the most sparkle to retail sales in June, rising by 32.9 per cent year-on-year. Retail sales for telecommunications apparatus and computers registered the second-highest increase at 29.5 per cent.
Retail sales at petrol service stations rose 16.8 per cent year-on-year, while food and beverage sales increased 7.8 per cent, the data showed.
Adjusted for seasonal factors, overall retail sales rose 1.6 per cent in June from May, when they fell a revised 0.8 per cent.
The growth in retail sales was partly attributed to tourists visiting the city in record numbers, drawn by Genting Singapore and Las Vegas Sands’ casino complexes on the island, which include shopping malls, hotels and restaurants.
Average wages have also risen. According to the Ministry of Manpower, average wages before adjusting for inflation rose 8.5 per cent in the first quarter from a year earlier.
The economy added an estimated 22,800 jobs last quarter, after the creation of 28,300 in the first three months of this year.
The increasing appetite for luxury goods was reflected in the financial results of high-end retailers such as The Hour Glass, which last week reported a 30 per cent increase in revenue for the quarter ended June.