The euro area retail trade volume dropped 11.7% in April on a monthly basis with impacts of COVID-19 measures on the economy felt, the EU’s statistical authority revealed on Thursday.

The retail trade volume also fell 11.1% in the European Union in April versus March, Eurostat noted.

In March, the volume decreased 11.1% in the eurozone and 16.9% in the EU.

The eurozone/euro area or EA19 represents member states that use the single currency — euro — while the EU27 includes all member countries of the bloc.

The volume of retail trade was down 27.7% for automotive fuels, 17% for non-food products and 5.5% for food, drinks and tobacco, in the euro area.

In the EU side, the volume of retail trade fell 25% for automotive fuels, 14.7% for non-food products and 5.9% for food, drinks and tobacco.

Retail trade via mail order and internet rose 10.9% in the eurozone and 11.9% in the EU in April versus March.

“Among Member States for which data are available, the largest decreases in the total retail trade volume were registered in Malta (-25.1%), Romania (-22.3%) and Ireland (-21.9%),” Eurostat said.

Finland was the only country posting a monthly rise (0.3%) in the retail trade volume in April.

Annual comparison

The annual figures of both eurozone and the EU also mirrored the adverse economic impacts of coronavirus.

“In April 2020 compared with April 2019, the calendar adjusted retail sales index decreased by 19.6% in the euro area and by 18% in the EU,” Eurostat said.

On a yearly basis, the volume of retail trade decreased 46.9% for automotive fuels and 33.6% for non-food products in the eurozone, while it fell 42.6% for automotive fuels and 29.7% for non-food products in the EU.

“The volume of retail trade decreased in all Member States for which data are available, with the largest decreases in France (-31.1%), Spain (-29.8%), Malta (-24.8%) and Luxembourg (-24.7%),” it said.

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