Retail sales tacked on 2.5% on year in September

Singapore's retail sales growth slowed in September, with a 2.5 percent on-year increase, compared to a revised 3.3 per cent in August. 

The weaker-than-expected growth was mainly due to a drop in vehicle sales and luxury goods like watches and jewellery. 

In a statement released by the Department of Statistics on Thursday, retail sales, excluding motor vehicles, rose 3.9 percent on-year in September. 

Sales of motor vehicles declined 2.4 percent on-year and sales of watches and jewellery dropped 2.8 percent. 

In contrast, retail sales of supermarkets increased 13.8 percent, while purchases of telecommunications apparatus & computers jumped 15.8 percent. 

According to a report by Barclays, September's robust sales of technology products was possibly attributed to an IT roadshow and the launch of the iPhone5. 

While Singapore's tight labour market serves as a support for the consumption of basic necessities, Barclays said consumers appear to be still shying away from purchases of luxury goods. 

Compared to August, retail sales (seasonally adjusted) contracted by 0.5 per cent in September. 

Meanwhile, food and beverage services sales rose 3.7 percent on-year in September. 

After seasonal adjustments, sales of food and beverage services dropped 0.8 percent in September, compared to August.