Despite high energy prices and inflation, dealers in Hesse expect lucrative Christmas sales. But even without the corona restrictions, the previous sales would not be achieved.
The Hessian retail sector is expecting actual sales to fall in the current Christmas business, despite continuous shop opening hours. The Hesse Trade Association published an estimate of EUR 10.5 billion in sales for November and December on Wednesday. Although it is nominally 5.4 percent higher than in the same period of the previous year, which was characterized by Corona, price-adjusted trade is likely to fall by 4 percent, the association announced in Frankfurt.
no real development expected
For the year as a whole, retailers are expecting 55 billion euros, which would mean a slight increase of 7.5 percent compared to 2021. As with the federal government, no real development is to be expected here either. Association President Jochen Ruths: “The turnover was set in relation to inflation. This fact harms many retailers.” His deputy Tatjana Steinbrenner reported on the high cost pressure on individual companies.
Many traders see their existence in danger
In normal times, energy costs in retail were only 2 percent. Nevertheless, there is a threat of tight margins if electricity costs suddenly triple and local public utilities no longer offer long-term supply contracts. More than a third of retailers see their economic existence at risk.
Forecast: Online business figures will decline
Nevertheless, the association records a slight improvement in stable business compared to the end of 2021, when some stores still used “2G wristbands” to vaccinate customers against Corona in stores. According to the forecast, online trading, which has recently been heavily used, will also decline slightly nationwide, while stationery shops will regain a share of the business. But even they can no longer do without the Internet as a sales channel, explained Steinbrenner. This was already evident this week with the “Black Friday” discount sign.