Maxima builds a huge logistics center

Retail chain Maxima is building one of Estonia’s largest logistics centers, taking up 45,000 square meters of space, and providing work for 350 people.

The purpose of the logistics center is to create a central storage complex, which will service all Maxima stores across Estonia. The total area of the center encompasses around 45,000 square meters, which will make it one of Estonia’s biggest logistics buildings.

Dry, cold and container storage areas will be built in the complex alongside with 130 docks to move goods. These platforms will service around 300 deliveries daily. The project is expected to cost around 30 million euros.

Work on the center began this week in Harju County and is planned for completion in December 2015.

Source: ERR News

Prices temporarily declined compared to last year

Data from Statistics Estonia show that prices did not change for consumers during June but they were 0.4% lower than a year earlier. The main reason for the fall in prices was that electricity was 13% cheaper than a year earlier. The price of electricity hit a record peak last June as generation capacity in the Baltic states was restricted by interruptions to supply, but in June this year the electricity price on the power exchange was one of the lowest ever recorded. Prices also fell for fruit and vegetables and for communications services.

Preliminary assessments show that inflation in the euro area stood at 0.5% in June, which was the lowest for several years. Although inflation is picking up in the euro area, it will remain modest as economic activity there is only growing slowly. Low price pressures in the external environment and lower prices for imported goods contributed a significant amount to the fall in Estonian prices, with durables that mostly include imports falling in price by 3.6% in June. An exception was motor fuels, which rose in price by 0.8% as global oil prices started to rise in response to geopolitical tensions. The oil price in euros has been stable since 2011, fluctuating within a narrow range of 80-90 euros a barrel.

Although falling prices generally hinder economic growth, the effect this time is rather the opposite, as falling prices driven mainly by energy prices favour both households and companies. Falling prices reduce economic activity if the fall continues for a long time as they can cause consumption decisions to be postponed. The current fall in prices will prove only temporary because inflation will pick up in the second half of the year as energy prices stop falling and food prices rise more quickly. Eesti Pank’s forecast expects that prices will rise by 0.8% in 2014.

Source: Bank of Estonia

Author: Rasmus Kattai, Head of the Economic Policy and Forecasting Division, Eesti Pank

June prices were influenced by cheap electricity

According to Statistics Estonia, the change of the consumer price index in June 2014 was 0.0% compared to May 2014 and –0.4% compared to June of the previous year.

Goods were 0.3% more expensive compared to June 2013 and services were 1.5% cheaper.

Regulated prices of goods and services have risen by 0.7% and non-regulated prices have fallen by 0.7% compared to June of the previous year.

Compared to June 2013, the consumer price index was influenced the most by electricity. In June 2014, the electricity that arrived at homes was 13% cheaper than in June last year, when the price of electricity was record-high. Compared to June of the previous year, 4.1% more expensive alcoholic beverages, 6% more expensive tobacco, 13% cheaper mobile communication services and 7% more expensive dairy products also had a bigger impact on the index. Motor fuel was 0.8% more expensive than in the same month last year. Compared to June 2013, of food products, the prices of processed fruit have increased the most (11%) and the prices of sugar and apples have decreased the most (31% and 23%, respectively).

The last time that the annual change of the consumer price index was below –0.4% was in the period of June 2009 to January 2010, when it ranged from –0.7% to –2.2%.

In June compared to May, the consumer price index was mainly influenced by 1.3% more expensive motor fuel, 10.8% more expensive accommodation services and 0.3% cheaper food (mainly due to the 4% cheaper fresh vegetables). Compared to May, the prices of sweet pepper increased the most (20%) and the prices of Chinese cabbage and tomatoes decreased the most (27% and 26%, respectively).

Change of the consumer price index by commodity groups, June 2014
Commodity group June 2013 –
June 2014, %
May 2014 –
June 2014, %
TOTAL -0.4 0.0
Food and non-alcoholic beverages -0.3 -0.2
Alcoholic beverages and tobacco 4.6 -0.6
Clothing and footwear 1.1 -0.4
Housing -3.4 0.4
Household goods 0.3 -0.4
Health 3.1 0.2
Transport -1.2 0.3
Communications -5.7 -0.5
Recreation and culture 1.8 -0.1
Education -14.3 0.5
Hotels, cafés and restaurants 4.9 2.2
Miscellaneous goods and services 1.8 -0.2

Source: Statistics Estonia

The growth in retail sales decelerated in May

According to Statistics Estonia, in May 2014 compared to May of the previous year, the retail sales of goods of retail trade enterprises increased 4% at constant prices. In April retail sales increased 8% compared to the same month of the previous year, while in May the retail sales growth decelerated.

In May 2014, the retail sales of goods of retail trade enterprises were 424.1 million euros, which was 322 euros per inhabitant. The retail sales growth in stores selling manufactured goods slowed down markedly compared to the previous months. The retail sales of those stores increased 13% in March and 11% in April compared to the corresponding month in 2013, whereas in May the growth was 6%. The sales increased in five and decreased in two economic activities. Compared to May 2013, the retail sales via mail order or the Internet increased the most – almost by a fourth (23%). The retail sales increased also in stores selling textiles, clothing and footwear (17% growth), in stores selling pharmaceutical goods and cosmetics (13% growth), in stores selling household goods and appliances, hardware and building materials (6% growth) and in other specialised stores, such as stores selling computers and their accessories, photography supplies, books, sports equipment, games and toys, flowers, plants etc. (5% growth). The retail sales in non-specialised stores selling predominantly industrial goods (e.g. department stores) and the retail sales of second-hand goods in stores and non-store retail sale (stalls, markets, direct sale) decreased compared to May 2013.

The retail sales growth in grocery stores also decelerated in May. Compared to the same month of the previous year, the retail sales in grocery stores grew 8% in April and just 4% in May. The deceleration of this growth rate was mainly due to the high reference base of May 2013.

The retail sales of automotive fuel increased 1% at constant prices compared to May 2013.

Compared to the previous month, in May the retail sales in retail trade enterprises increased 5% at constant prices. According to the seasonally and working-day adjusted data, the retail sales decreased 1% compared to the previous month. During the five months (January–May) of 2014, the retail sales in retail trade enterprises increased 6% at constant prices compared to the corresponding period of the previous year.

In May the turnover of retail trade enterprises was 506.9 million euros, out of which the retail sales of goods accounted for 84%. The turnover increased 5% at current prices compared to April 2014 as well as compared to May 2013.

Retail sales volume index of retail trade enterprises and its trend, January 2004 – May 2014 (2010 = 100)

Diagram: Retail sales volume index of retail trade enterprises and its trend

Source: Statistics Estonia

Estonians love SUVs

In spite of the virtual recession, Estonians are buying more SUVs than in the boom times.

Among best-selling models, SUVs now take up four places out of five.

The top-selling SUV is Honda CR-V with 431 cars sold this year, followed by Toyota RAV4 (414 cars), Nissan Qashqai (242 cars), Skoda Octavia (202 cars, the only non-SUV in the top five), and Subaru Forester (188 cars).

Read more from BBN

The growth in retail sales accelerated

According to Statistics Estonia, in April 2014 compared to April of the previous year, the retail sales of goods of retail trade enterprises increased 8% at constant prices. While in March retail sales increased 5% compared to the same month of the previous year, then in April the retail sales growth accelerated.

In April 2014, the retail sales of goods of retail trade enterprises were 403.6 million euros, which was 307 euros per inhabitant. The growth rate of retail sales in grocery stores accelerated significantly compared to the previous months. While in January the retail sales of those stores increased 5% compared to the same month of the previous year, in February 4% and in March 2%, then in April the growth was 8%. The growth in the retail sales of those stores was influenced by the discount sales campaigns that took place in April, also by the low reference base of the previous year and by the deceleration in the price increase of food products. While in March the annual price increase of food products was 1.7%, then in April 1.2%. Due to a large share, grocery stores covered a bit more than a half of the total increase of the sales of retail trade enterprises.

The retail sales in stores selling manufactured goods increased 11% compared to April 2013. The retail sales via mail order or the Internet increased the most, with retail sales increasing 30% over the year. A higher than average increase occurred also in stores selling textiles, clothing and footwear (20% growth) and in stores selling household goods and appliances, hardware and building materials (15% growth).

The retail sales of automotive fuel, which showed a 2% fall in February and March, took an upturn again in April and increased 3% at constant prices compared to April of the previous year.

Compared to the previous month, in April, the retail sales in retail trade enterprises increased 4% at constant prices. According to the seasonally and working-day adjusted data, the increase was 2%. In the four months (January–April) of 2014, the retail sales in retail trade enterprises increased 6% at constant prices compared to the corresponding period of the previous year.

In April, the turnover of retail trade enterprises was 484.7 million euros, out of which the retail sales of goods accounted for 83%. Compared to April 2013, the turnover increased by 10% at current prices. Compared to the previous month, this indicator increased by 3%.Retail sales volume index of retail trade enterprises and its trend, January 2004 – April 2014
(2010 = 100)

Diagram: Retail sales volume index of retail trade enterprises and its trend

 

 

Source: Statistics Estonia

160 new Porsches have been bought in Estonia in less than 2 years

Estonian Porsche dealer Auto 100 that is opening a new showroom next week in Tallinn says that the demand for Porsches in Estonia is so high that the they have asked the car maker to supply more cars for Estonia, writes Delfi.

Since the summer 2012 when Auto 100 signed a partnership contract with Porsche AG, 160 new Porsches have been bought in Estonia.

Read more from BBN

The growth in retail sales continued

According to Statistics Estonia, in March 2014 compared to March of the previous year, the retail sales of goods of retail trade enterprises increased 5% at constant prices.

In March 2014, the retail sales of goods of retail trade enterprises were 385.4 million euros, which was 294 euros per inhabitant. The retail sales growth in stores selling manufactured goods, which decelerated significantly in February, accelerated again in March. While in February the retail sales of those stores increased 5% during the year, then in March the growth was 12%. Sales increased in most economic activities. Only the retail sales in non-specialized stores selling predominantly industrial goods (e.g. department stores) were 2% smaller than in March of the previous year. In March, the retail sales via mail order or the Internet increased the most (38% growth). A higher than average increase occurred also in stores selling textiles, clothing and footwear (32% growth) and in stores selling household goods and appliances, hardware and building materials (13% growth).

The retail sales in grocery stores increased 2% compared to March of the previous year, but compared with previous months the growth in retail sales decelerated to some extent. The deceleration of retail sales growth in those stores was influenced by the high reference base of March of the previous year.

The retail sales of automotive fuel decreased 2% at constant prices compared to March 2013.

Compared to the previous month, in March, the retail sales in retail trade enterprises increased 16% at constant prices. According to the seasonally and working-day adjusted data, the increase was 3%. During the three months (January–March) of 2014, the retail sales in retail trade enterprises increased 5% at constant prices compared to the corresponding period of the previous year.

In March the turnover of retail trade enterprises was 466.1 million euros, out of which the retail sales of goods accounted for 83%. Compared to March 2013, the turnover increased by 7% at current prices. Compared to the previous month, this indicator increased by 17%.

Retail sales volume index of retail trade enterprises and its trend,
January 2004 – March 2014 (2010 = 100)

Diagram: Retail sales volume index of retail trade enterprises and its trend

Source: Statistics Estonia

 

February inflation was mainly influenced by food

According to Statistics Estonia, the change of the consumer price index in February 2014 was 0.1% compared to January 2014 and 0.6% compared to February of the previous year.

Goods were 1.0% more expensive and services 0.2% cheaper compared to February of the previous year.

Regulated prices of goods and services have decreased by 0.4% and non-regulated prices have risen by 0.9% compared to February of the previous year.

Compared to February 2013, the consumer price index was mainly influenced by the 2.4% price increase of food, whereas the 5.5% more expensive dairy products accounted for 40% and the 8.1% more expensive vegetables accounted for nearly a third of the impact of food on the index. 90% of the increase in the index caused by food was offset by the price decrease of electricity, heat energy and fuel – heat energy was 4.7% cheaper and the electricity that arrived at homes was 4.1% cheaper than in February 2013. Alcoholic beverages and tobacco also had a bigger impact on the index, as their prices increased by 5.3% and 7.6% respectively, compared to February 2013. In February 2014, motor fuel was 4.6% cheaper than in the same month last year. Compared to February 2013, of food products, the prices of fresh vegetables and fish have increased the most (14% and 12%, respectively) and the prices of coffee and sugar have decreased the most (16% and 13%, respectively).

In February compared to January, the consumer price index was mainly influenced by the 1.8% price decrease of electricity, heat energy and fuel, by the 1.4% price increase of alcoholic beverages and tobacco, and by the end of the sales of clothing and footwear. Cigarettes with the new excise stamps arrived in most stores. Compared to January, the prices of Chinese cabbage increased the most (47%) and the prices of oranges decreased the most (17%).

Change of the consumer price index by commodity groups, February 2014
Commodity group February 2013 – February 2014 % January 2014 – February 2014 %
TOTAL 0.6 0.1
Food and non-alcoholic beverages 1.7 0.4
Alcoholic beverages and tobacco 5.9 1.4
Clothing and footwear 2.0 1.8
Housing –1.1 –0.9
Household goods 0.7 0.4
Health 5.8 0.3
Transport –2.9 –0.2
Communications –7.2 –0.2
Recreation and culture 3.1 0.2
Education –14.9 0.2
Hotels. cafés and restaurants 5.4 0.5
Miscellaneous goods and services 2.7 –0.6

 

Source: Statistics Estonia

January retail sales were 279 euros per inhabitant

According to Statistics Estonia, in January 2014 compared to January 2013, the retail sales of goods of retail trade enterprises increased 7% at constant prices.

In the last three months of 2013, the retail sales have increased 4–6% compared to the same month of the previous year. This January, the retail sales growth accelerated to some extent.

In January 2014, the retail sales of goods of retail trade enterprises were 366.1 million euros, which was 279 euros per inhabitant. The retail sales in stores selling manufactured goods increased 12% compared to January 2013. The sales increased in all economic activities. The retail sales via mail order or the Internet increased the most (32% growth). In January, the retail sales growth in stores selling textiles, clothing and footwear accelerated remarkably with the retail sales increasing 23% over the year. The growth in retail sales of these stores was influenced by the lower reference base of the previous year and by the discount sales campaigns that took place in January. A higher-than-average increase occurred also in other specialized stores, such as stores selling computers and their accessories, photography supplies, books, sports equipment, games and toys, etc. (14% growth).

The retail sales in grocery stores increased 5% compared to January of the previous year. In comparison with the previous months, the retail sales growth in these stores accelerated slightly. The growth acceleration in the retail sales of grocery stores was influenced by the lower reference base of the previous year and by the deceleration in the price increase of food products. While in January of the previous year, the annual price increase of food products was 5.5%, then in this January it was 2.5%.

The retail sales of automotive fuel increased 4% at constant prices compared to January 2013.

Compared to the previous month, the retail sales in retail trade enterprises decreased almost by a fifth (18%) at constant prices in January. This is a usual fall following the Christmas time and end-of-year sales. According to the seasonally and working-day adjusted data, the retail sales increased 3% compared to the previous month.

In January, the turnover of retail trade enterprises was 440.8 million euros, out of which the retail sales of goods accounted for 83%. Compared to January 2013, the turnover increased by 9% at current prices. Compared to the previous month, this indicator decreased 14%.

Retail sales volume index of retail trade enterprises and its trend, January 2004 – January 2014 (2010 = 100)

Retail sales volume index of retail trade enterprises and its trend

 

Source: Statistics Estonia

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