Information from the Statistics and Census Service (DSEC) indicated that, benefited from the Lunar New Year effects, more than half of the interviewed restaurants & similar establishments and retailers reported a year-on-year growth in receipts in January 2017, the highest proportion recorded since the survey was first conducted. Among the interviewed restaurants & similar establishments, 61% reported a year-on-year growth in receipts in January, a substantial increase of 27 percentage points from December 2016. The proportions of Chinese Restaurants (91%), Japanese & Korean Restaurants (50%) and Western Restaurants (65%) that recorded a year-on-year rise in receipts surged by 34, 31 and 30 percentage points respectively from December 2016. Meanwhile, 28% of the interviewed restaurants & similar establishments reported a year-on-year decline in receipts, down by 16 percentage points from December 2016, with the Chinese Restaurants, Western Restaurants and Japanese & Korean Restaurants decreasing by 25, 25 and 13 percentage points respectively.
As regards retail trade, 53% of the interviewed retailers reported a year-on-year increase in sales in January 2017, up by 11 percentage points from December 2016. As in December 2016, all of the interviewed Leather Goods Retailers showed a year-on-year rise in sales in January 2017. Moreover, the proportions of Supermarkets (78%), Cosmetics & Sanitary Articles Retailers (60%) and Adults' Clothing Retailers (65%) that recorded a year-on-year growth in sales went up by 33, 30 and 13 percentage points respectively from the preceding month, while the corresponding proportion of Department Stores went down by 6 percentage points. On the other hand, 32% of the interviewed retailers reported a year-on-year decrease in sales in January 2017, down significantly by 17 percentage points from December 2016, with the corresponding proportions of Clocks & Jewellery Retailers, Supermarkets and Cosmetics & Sanitary Articles Retailers falling by 26, 22 and 20 percentage points respectively.
The interviewed restaurants & similar establishments expected a slowdown in business after the Lunar New Year, with 56% anticipating their receipts to increase year-on-year or remain stable in February, down by 8 percentage points from January. Meanwhile, 44% of the restaurants & similar establishments predicted a year-on-year decline in receipts. Among the various types of establishments, 52% of the interviewed Local Style Cafes, Congee & Noodle Shops, 38% of the Japanese & Korean Restaurants and 34% of the Chinese Restaurants expected their receipts to remain stable year-on-year in February; meanwhile, Chinese Restaurants that predicted a year-on-year decrease in receipts soared by 48 percentage points from January to 64%.
Retailers also expected business to slacken off in February. The proportion of interviewed retailers that anticipated a year-on-year increase in sales in February went down by 8 percentage points from January to 17%. Among the various types of retailers, the proportion of Leather Goods Retailers that anticipated a year-on-year growth in sales dropped to 40%; meanwhile, 60% of the Adults' Clothing Retailers, 56% of the Department Stores and 44% of the Supermarkets expected their receipts to remain stable in February. On the other hand, 44% of the interviewed retailers anticipated a year-on-year decline in sales, and the corresponding proportions of Motor Vehicle Retailers and Clocks & Jewellery Retailers were 67% and 47% respectively.
The sample of the Business Climate Survey on Restaurants & Similar Establishments and Retail Trade was selected based on the value of receipts of the establishments, comprising 167 restaurants & similar establishments (accounting for 53% of the industry’s receipts) and 135 retailers (accounting for 70% of the industry’s receipts). The Survey results were not extrapolated and only reflect the assessment of the business performance and expectations of the sample restaurants and retailers.