Puerto Rico’s retail sales jumped by $85.1 million in September when compared to the same month in 2015, exceeding the $3 billion mark, Puerto Rico Trade and Export revealed Thursday.
The most recent results represent an increase of 2.86 percent compared to September 2015, when sales reached $2.9 billion, agency Executive Director Karla Angleró said.
“The increase during the month of September represents the third monthly increase in retail sales since June 2015, when comparing the sales for each month in that period with the same month the prior year,” Angleró said.
“The value of retail sales recorded in September 2016 represent the fourth consecutive year in the last 10 years with a record level of sales in that month,” she said.
The agency attributed September’s growth to the numbers reported in the categories of new and used motor vehicles, grocery stores, hardware stores, mobile home construction, and furniture stores.
While September figures were positive, the agency also noted that during the period between January and September 2016, retail sales recorded a contraction of $280 million, reaching a cumulative total of $27.4 billion, compared with $27.7 billion accumulated during the same period last year. This result represented a decline of 1.01 percent.
The September report showed that seven out of the nine sales regions in Puerto Rico experienced growth compared to the same month last year, as follows: Arecibo, 12.01 percent; Fajardo, 11.58 percent; San Juan, 4.25 percent; Ponce, 3.61 percent; Guayama, 3.59 percent; Aguadilla, 3.19 percent; Caguas 0.73 percent. The regions that reflected contraction in sales were: Mayagüez, -2.80 percent; and Bayamón -0.13 percent.
Among the commercial establishments that registered growth in September 2016 include: new and used motor vehicles, 14.18 percent; furniture stores, 13.05 percent; lumber, building materials and mobile homes, 12.79 percent; other general goods stores, 11.07 percent; and grocery stores, 5.55 percent.
Among the establishments that reflected a contraction in September 2016 compared to the same month last year were: jewelry stores, -7 percent; women’s clothing stores, -6.42 percent; clothing stores for boys and men, -4.93 percent; gas stations -3.92 percent; and electronics stores, -3.13 percent.