Figures released by Statistics South Africa indicated that retail trade sales decreased by half a percentage point in February compared with January 2022.
The largest negative contribution came from hardware, paint, glass, food, beverages, tobacco, as well as general dealers.
Retail sales declined by 0.9% on a year-on-year basis in February 2022, compared to February last year.
An Economist at Econometrix Laura Campbell says the decline in retail sales is an indication of the financial pressures consumers are faced with.
“It is likely that the financial position of households did come under some pressure in February following a second rise in interest rates at the end of January. The increase in interest rates will have increased household debt servicing costs and threw this wage on their disposable incomes. The high unemployment rate in SA and weak consumer confidence are also likely to have weighed in household consumption in the month.”