Fashion is the biggest victim of European coronavirus restrictions

As a result of the restrictions imposed in an attempt to control the spread of Covid-19, Eurostat’s figures reflect sharply contrasting situations depending on the sector: food retail actually saw an 8.3% increase during the period, while fashion saw sales plummet. Sales in European apparel and footwear retail decreased 41.7% compared to March 2019, the largest decline of any sector. Furniture and electronics fared slightly better, posting a decrease of 15.6%, while IT and book sales fell 14.3%. 

From a geographical perspective, it seems that France was the European country most severely affected by declines in retail sales in March, experiencing a 16% decrease. Slovenia and Bulgaria also struggled, with retail sales declines of 15.1% and 14.6%, respectively. Comparatively, Germany (-3.1%) and the UK (-4%) look to have managed a certain measure of damage control. Other countries even saw slight increases during the month, such as Hungary, where sales rose 3.5%, Romania, which posted a 3.1% increase, and Ireland, where total retail sales were up 3%.

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