Puerto Rico retail sales reflected a 1.42 percent drop year-over-year in April, when activity at the cash register $44.4 million, Puerto Rico Trade and Export figures released Thursday showed.
Total retail sales April 2016 was a little more than $3 billion, while the figure for the same month in 2015 was $3.1 billion, agency Executive Director Francisco Chévere confirmed.
“This reduction in retail sales was mainly due to a -17.55 percent contraction in sales at gasoline stations, auto shops and home goods stores by -10.10 percent and clothing stores for youth and men, -6.88 percent” he said.
Meanwhile, 12 commercial sectors showed an increase in sales, with new and used motor vehicles sales up 10.12 percent, clothing stores for women up 8.61 percent and other general merchandise stores with a 6.48 percent increase, the government official said.
On the other hand, five of the nine regions reported increases in their sales of up 7.67 percent in April 2016 when compared to the same period last year.
The regions reflected sales growth were Fajardo (7.67 percent,) San Juan (3.27 percent,) Aguadilla (3.03 percent,) Arecibo (0.24 percent,) and Mayaguez (0.09 percent.)
The regions that recorded contractions were: Bayamón (-7.33 percent,) Caguas (-5.44 percent,) Guayama (-2.39 percent,) and Ponce (-0.44 percent.)
Small and mid-sized business retail sales decreased $44.3 in April 2016, which represented a decrease of 3.76 percent compared to the same period last year. Sales in this sector accounted for 70.2 percent of total retail sales in Puerto Rico.
Total cumulative sales from January to April 2016 totaled $12.1 billion, a decrease of -2.04 percent compared to the same period of 2015, when total cumulative sales reached $12.3 billion, the agency confirmed.