Downturn in Canadian economy does not affect retail sales
By Mario Cywinski | June 11, 2008
Retailers and restaurants throughout Canada are seeing slight growth despite the slowing economy, according to data from Moneris Solutions.
Sales using gift cards and debit cards were up five per cent in the first four months of 2008, as compared to the same period last year. The average amount spent at the checkout rose by three per cent.
The largest sales increases were seen in Regina, Saskatchewan at 24 per cent, and in Winnipeg, Manitoba which saw a 12 per cent grown in spending.
On the opposite end of the spectrum, Montreal, Vancouver and Halifax each saw a decrease in restaurant spending by four per cent.
"Modest single digit growth is normal for this time of year for cities like Vancouver, Calgary, Toronto and Montreal. However, the average check-out amount is growing faster than usual at 10 per cent in Toronto, indicating that prosperous Torontonians are supporting the economy," says Brian Green, Senior Vice President, Moneris Solutions.
It is interesting to note that according to a BMO Nesbitt Burns study, Canadians are still paying 18 per cent more for the same products than our American neighbours. The biggest price disparity can be seen for high-end products, such as automobiles.
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