Ministry reports retailer sales down, convenience stores up

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Ministry reports retailer sales down, convenience stores up

Due to the Middle East respiratory syndrome (MERS), sales at major retailers fell sharply in June, according to the Ministry of Trade, Industry and Energy on Wednesday.

Revenue at major discount stores fell 10.2 percent year-on-year due to MERS and fewer working days last month.

Department stores saw revenue drop 11.9 percent. The impact was particularly severe in the first two weeks of June, when fear of the outbreak was at its peak. Sales at major discount stores fell 14.5 percent in the first two weeks of June, while department stores lost 11.7 percent.

The two fewer working days on the calendar in June compared to a year ago also contributed to the drop, the ministry said.

Sales at convenience stores have risen largely due to an increase in branches and higher cigarette prices, with their revenues increasing 29 percent year-on-year.

Quarterly sales at major discount stores dropped 3.2 percent in the April-June period from a year earlier. Department store sales fell 2.1 percent during the same period, while convenient store sales rose nearly 30 percent.

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