Polish shoppers are spending more than analysts expected, adding resilience to the economy at a time of growing crisis in the rest of the EU.
The government’s statistical agency on Tuesday released retail sales numbers for May, showing a 7.7 per cent increase over the same period in 2011, with the European football championships playing a key role in boosting business by encouraging Poles to buy televisions.
Ernest Pytlarczyk, chief economist with Poland’s BRE Bank, wrote that almost a quarter of the overall increase was due to higher sales of televisions and white goods, probably the result of Poles upgrading their AV equipment to watch the tournament, co-hosted by Poland and Ukraine.
That is also borne out by data showing book sales slumping by about 10 per cent – who has time for reading when the tournament is on?
The 7.7 per cent increase in the headline figures compares with 5.5 per cent for April. In volume terms the rise was 4.3 per cent, up from 1.8 per cent.
Despite the robust numbers, there are some signs that the Polish economy is slowing – although its trajectory is still better elsewhere in the EU. The data showed an increase in sales at discount shops, which suggests Poles are becoming a little more worried about their economic situation.
Do następnego razu… (Till next time…)