Japan's department store sales fall 2.1 pct on year in May

16:51, June 21, 2010      

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Japan's department store sales dropped 2.1 percent on year in May on a same-store basis, the Japan Department Stores Association (JDSA) said in a report Monday.

The industry body reported that the pace of year-on-year declines, although marking the 27th straight monthly decline, had slowed from the previous month as consumer sentiment improved.

Sales in May stood at 491.2 billion yen (5.41 billion U.S. dollars) and the association noted that sales of summer clothing and other seasonal items, as well as luxury goods, improved due to good weather during the Golden Week holiday period and on the back of rising consumer sentiment as corporations' profits improved.

However, the association added that in the latter half of the recording month sales did not increase due to a number of rainy days dampening shoppers' verve to buy.

Including sales at stores that were opened within the past year, department store sales fell 3.9 percent on year in May, following a 5.8 percent drop in the previous month.

In the Tokyo Metropolitan area, combined sales at 27 leading department stores fell 1.8 percent from a year earlier to 122.2 billion yen (1.34 billion U.S. dollars) in May, after declining 4. 9 percent on year in April, the association said.

According to the JDSA, spending by Chinese and other foreign tourists, which rose 50 percent from a year earlier, supported department store sales in May.



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