German retail turnover in Feb. drops by 7.7 pct year-on-year

Retail companies in Germany saw turnover rise 1.3 percent in February 2021 compared with the previous month, according to provisional data published by the Federal Statistical Office (Destatis) on Thursday.

However, compared with February last year, the month before the first COVID-19 case was detected in Germany, turnover in retail in February 2021 was still down 7.7 percent.

According to Destatis, the country’s various retail sectors performed “very differently”, largely depending on “whether and how they were affected by the pandemic response measures.”

Compared to last year, retail trade in textiles, clothing, footwear and leather goods as well as retail turnover of department stores and warehouses plummeted in real terms by 73.7 percent and 42.1 percent respectively.

At the same time, online and mail-order retailers “benefited significantly” from the store closures and saw their sales shoot up 34.1 percent in real terms compared to the same month last year, Destatis noted.

According to a recent estimate by the German Retail Federation (HDE), retailers affected by the lockdown likely lost between 35 and 40 billion euros (41.1 billion and 47 billion U.S. dollars) in turnover since the country’s second lockdown was started in mid-December last year. (1 euro=1.18 U.S. dollars)