Hong Kong luxury sales pick up following political turmoil
Sales turnaround continues as tourism and consumer sentiment improve, but government warns of rocky road ahead amid uncertainty. Hong Kong’s retail sales continued to regain momentum last month on stronger consumer sentiment and rising tourist numbers – but the government is warning of uncertainty ahead.
The value of sales in November was up 4.1 per cent year on year, after growth of 1.4 per cent in October signaled an end to months of falling sales amid economic uncertainty and Beijing’s crackdown on graft and conspicuous consumption.
But the jewellery, watches and valuable gifts category continued to slump, although only by 2 per cent, after an 11.6 per cent fall in October. High-end goods were popular with mainland tourists, but President Xi Jinping’s anti-graft drive has dampened their enthusiasm. Spending on fuel fell 4.4 per cent amid slumping global oil prices.
Tourism Board figures for October show that visitor numbers from the mainland rose 18.3 per cent year on year to more than four million, offsetting a small decline in the number of overseas visitors. Government sources expect a year-on-year increase for last month.