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Hong Kong Retail Sales Fall Further

Hong Kong's retail sales fell for the eleventh month in a row in December, as the widespread anti-government protests continued to hurt economic activity, figures from the Census and Statistics Department showed on Tuesday.

The retail sales volume declined 21.0 percent year-on-year in December, following a 25.5 percent decrease in November.

The value of retail sales decreased 19.4 percent annually in December, following a 23.7 percent fall in the preceding month.

Sales of jewelry, watches and clocks, and valuable gifts decreased 36.7 percent annually in December, and those of department stores and clothing, footwear and allied products declined by 25.3 percent and 21.8 percent, respectively.

On a seasonally adjusted basis, the retail sales value decreased by 7.1 percent in the fourth quarter and the volume fell by 6.7 percent.

In 2019, retail sales decreased by 11.1 percent in value and 12.3 percent in volume compared with 2018.

"Business environment for retail trade has become even more difficult recently, with the threat of the novel corona virus infection heavily weighing on inbound tourism and local consumption sentiment," a government spokesman said.

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