China retail sales surged 15 percent during Lunar New Year holidays
Beijing, China (4E) – Chinese officials reported on Saturday that retail sales gained 15 percent on-year during the Lunar New Year holiday, as consumers spent heavily on food, clothes and jewelry.
China’s Ministry of Commerce said that sales during the week-long holiday period from Feb. 9 to 15 jumped to 539bn yuan ($86.5bn).
Hundreds of millions of people in China celebrated the Lunar New Year, which is the biggest festival of the year in the country. Spending typically rises during the period.
The sales of jewelry items have jumped by 38.1 per cent while food items gained 9.8 per cent. Sales of clothes inched higher by 6.3 percent as beverages posted an 11.2 per cent increase.
State news agency Xinhua said that sales at luxurious restaurants fell following a national campaign against extravagance.
This year’s sales growth, however, was lower compared to last year’s figure, which recorded a 16.2 percent rise in retail sales.
The report came from sales data of major retail and restaurant outlets being monitored by the Commerce Ministry. The cities mentioned in the report include Shanghai, Beijing and Nanjing. Also included are data from the central and eastern provinces of Henan, Shandong, Zhejiang Hebei and Hubei.
The latest figure come as the Chinese economy rebounds from seven consecutive quarters of declining expansion. In the last three months of 2012, China’s gross domestic product (GDP) grew by 7.9 percent.