Retail sector set for dipping sales figures

The sales forecast is not very positive for many retail segments according to a study by the Credit Suisse bank. Keystone / Peter Klaunzer

Food retailers in Switzerland are bracing themselves for lower sales figures this year as a result of the Covid-19 crisis.

This content was published on January 6, 2021 - 12:40 with Keystone-SDA/ug

Swiss bank Credit Suisse has forecast a 6% drop in sales for the food sector in 2021, following an exceptional 2020 which was marked by extra spending by consumers in the wake of a three-month closure of all shops with non-essential goods.

However, the bank’s economists expect 2% and 4% growth in the non-food sector for 2021 compared with 2020 and 2019 respectively.

The study, which was published on Wednesday, also shows that online shopping is likely to continue to win ground. Online sales rose by 55% to CHF16 billion ($18.2 billion) in 2020.

Credit Suisse economist Tiziana Hunziker told a news conference that the main driver of the trend was the closure of non-food shops.

Howewer, she said the European e-commerce company Zalando had not benefitted from the trend.

The study authors cautioned that the forecast for 2021 came with considerable uncertainty as Swiss consumer behaviour would continue to be overshadowed by the pandemic for several months.

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