Retail Sector to Grow Slightly in 2018

The fall in the automobile and construction materials sales was determinant in the increase of only 1.6%, which is forecast to close the year by companies in the commercial sector in Costa Rica.

Wednesday, December 5, 2018

Representatives of the Costa Rican Chamber of Commerce (CCCR) reported that expected growth for this year will be only 1.6%, significantly below the 3% average annual increases that have been reported in previous years.

For Alonso Elizondo, executive director of the CCCR, "... Another factor against it was the uncertainty of consumers, a consequence of instability caused by the fiscal situation, increases in interest rates and in the dollar value (exchange rate) and lower credit increase."

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Elizondo explained to that the country's situation "... generated that companies in the commercial sector create 2,094 jobs in the balance sheet (firings vs. new jobs) during this year, while the annual average of this indicator is between 3,000 and 3,200 jobs."

According to guild forecasts, the expectation for 2019 is that the sector could reach a 2.1% growth, which would be caused by an improvement in consumer prospects resulting from the approval of the tax reform.

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According to information from the National Institute of Statistics and Census (INEC), between the second quarter of 2017 and the same period of 2019, the number of jobs in the commercial sector was reduced by 28,621, from 386,597 to 357,976.

New Year's Eve Forecasts for the Retail Sector

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Businessmen from the commercial sector in Costa Rica expect for the Christmas season a sales behavior like that seen during the Black Friday Weekend.

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Costa Rica: Retail Sector to Grow 2.8% in 2018

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The trade association expects to close 2017 with a 3.3% annual growth, and projects a slight deceleration in this activity next year.

Retail activities this year could close with a relatively low growth of just 3.3%, driven in particular by sales of the subsectors of electrical and household products, food, beverages and tobacco, which recorded increases of over 4%. 

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