Despite COVID-19, these Ontario businesses are doing better than last year

News Oct 29, 2020 by Megan DeLaire Toronto.com

Ontarians' lifestyles have changed significantly since the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic, and it shows in the way they spend their money.

In its recent report “Consumers and the new reality,” the Retail Council of Canada highlights how, while retail spending has rebounded from lows of the early pandemic, economic recovery has been uneven across different sectors.

Throughout the summer, Ontarians spent less on clothing, accessories and dining out, and more on home improvement, groceries and hobbies, said Karl Littler, spokesperson for the Retail Council of Canada.

“The current story as told by Canada’s July and August numbers suggests … there are some parts of Canadian retail that have not got back to the level they were at before,” Littler said. “Some have done relatively well in this context as people have refocussed their spending around the home environment.”

Here is how businesses fared this August compared to August 2019, according to new data by Statistics Canada on retail, restaurant and bar sales.

Though some of the data is national, Littler said, national sales data consistently aligns with Ontario's numbers. 

“Ontario is 40 per cent of the economy and 40 per cent of retail sales, so anything you see here would be reflected in Ontario sales,” he said.

DOING BETTER

Building material, garden equipment and supplies: Sales at these stores were 17.1 per cent higher across Canada this August.

Sporting goods, hobby, book and music stores: Across Canada, stores sold 6.7 per cent more this August than last August.

“Music stores have done exceedingly well during this period," Littler said. “Notwithstanding that many of them had to be closed for a period doing curbside (sales), they’re still doing incredibly well.”

Furniture stores: Canadians spent 8.9 per cent more on furniture this August.

Food and beverage stores: This August, supermarket sales were up 11.4 per cent, convenience store sales were up 8.4 per cent, specialty food store sales were up 6.3 per cent and beer, wine and liquor store sales were up 6.6 per cent.

Used car dealers: Used car dealers sold 10.3 per cent more this August than August 2019.

Auto parts: Canadians spent 6.1 per cent more on auto parts this August.

Electronics and appliance stores: Electronics and appliance stores sold 7.7 per cent more this August.

DOING WORSE

Clothing and clothing accessory stores: Clothing stores fared worst in this category, selling 13.6 per cent less nationally than in August 2019. Shoe sales dropped by 12.2 per cent, while jewelry, luggage and leather good stores sold 0.2 per cent less than last August.

Bars and restaurants: Food service sales, including at full-service restaurants, limited-service eating places, special food services and drinking places, were 26.6 per cent lower in Ontario this August than last year.

New car dealers: New car dealers did not fare as well as used car dealers this August, selling 0.8 per cent less than in 2019.

Movie theatres: Cineplex, one of Canada’s largest theatre chains, laid off employees, cut employee salaries, and introduced other cost-saving measures this year after theatres were forced to temporarily close due to the pandemic. Kinepolis Group, which owns 44 Landmark Cinemas locations in Canada, reported its revenue dropped by 52.7 per cent in the second half of 2020.

Ontarians spending less on clothing, more on hobbies during pandemic

Consumer report lists businesses cashing in and losing out

News Oct 29, 2020 by Megan DeLaire Toronto.com

Ontarians' lifestyles have changed significantly since the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic, and it shows in the way they spend their money.

In its recent report “Consumers and the new reality,” the Retail Council of Canada highlights how, while retail spending has rebounded from lows of the early pandemic, economic recovery has been uneven across different sectors.

Throughout the summer, Ontarians spent less on clothing, accessories and dining out, and more on home improvement, groceries and hobbies, said Karl Littler, spokesperson for the Retail Council of Canada.

“The current story as told by Canada’s July and August numbers suggests … there are some parts of Canadian retail that have not got back to the level they were at before,” Littler said. “Some have done relatively well in this context as people have refocussed their spending around the home environment.”

Here is how businesses fared this August compared to August 2019, according to new data by Statistics Canada on retail, restaurant and bar sales.

Though some of the data is national, Littler said, national sales data consistently aligns with Ontario's numbers. 

“Ontario is 40 per cent of the economy and 40 per cent of retail sales, so anything you see here would be reflected in Ontario sales,” he said.

DOING BETTER

Building material, garden equipment and supplies: Sales at these stores were 17.1 per cent higher across Canada this August.

Sporting goods, hobby, book and music stores: Across Canada, stores sold 6.7 per cent more this August than last August.

“Music stores have done exceedingly well during this period," Littler said. “Notwithstanding that many of them had to be closed for a period doing curbside (sales), they’re still doing incredibly well.”

Furniture stores: Canadians spent 8.9 per cent more on furniture this August.

Food and beverage stores: This August, supermarket sales were up 11.4 per cent, convenience store sales were up 8.4 per cent, specialty food store sales were up 6.3 per cent and beer, wine and liquor store sales were up 6.6 per cent.

Used car dealers: Used car dealers sold 10.3 per cent more this August than August 2019.

Auto parts: Canadians spent 6.1 per cent more on auto parts this August.

Electronics and appliance stores: Electronics and appliance stores sold 7.7 per cent more this August.

DOING WORSE

Clothing and clothing accessory stores: Clothing stores fared worst in this category, selling 13.6 per cent less nationally than in August 2019. Shoe sales dropped by 12.2 per cent, while jewelry, luggage and leather good stores sold 0.2 per cent less than last August.

Bars and restaurants: Food service sales, including at full-service restaurants, limited-service eating places, special food services and drinking places, were 26.6 per cent lower in Ontario this August than last year.

New car dealers: New car dealers did not fare as well as used car dealers this August, selling 0.8 per cent less than in 2019.

Movie theatres: Cineplex, one of Canada’s largest theatre chains, laid off employees, cut employee salaries, and introduced other cost-saving measures this year after theatres were forced to temporarily close due to the pandemic. Kinepolis Group, which owns 44 Landmark Cinemas locations in Canada, reported its revenue dropped by 52.7 per cent in the second half of 2020.

Ontarians spending less on clothing, more on hobbies during pandemic

Consumer report lists businesses cashing in and losing out

News Oct 29, 2020 by Megan DeLaire Toronto.com

Ontarians' lifestyles have changed significantly since the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic, and it shows in the way they spend their money.

In its recent report “Consumers and the new reality,” the Retail Council of Canada highlights how, while retail spending has rebounded from lows of the early pandemic, economic recovery has been uneven across different sectors.

Throughout the summer, Ontarians spent less on clothing, accessories and dining out, and more on home improvement, groceries and hobbies, said Karl Littler, spokesperson for the Retail Council of Canada.

“The current story as told by Canada’s July and August numbers suggests … there are some parts of Canadian retail that have not got back to the level they were at before,” Littler said. “Some have done relatively well in this context as people have refocussed their spending around the home environment.”

Here is how businesses fared this August compared to August 2019, according to new data by Statistics Canada on retail, restaurant and bar sales.

Though some of the data is national, Littler said, national sales data consistently aligns with Ontario's numbers. 

“Ontario is 40 per cent of the economy and 40 per cent of retail sales, so anything you see here would be reflected in Ontario sales,” he said.

DOING BETTER

Building material, garden equipment and supplies: Sales at these stores were 17.1 per cent higher across Canada this August.

Sporting goods, hobby, book and music stores: Across Canada, stores sold 6.7 per cent more this August than last August.

“Music stores have done exceedingly well during this period," Littler said. “Notwithstanding that many of them had to be closed for a period doing curbside (sales), they’re still doing incredibly well.”

Furniture stores: Canadians spent 8.9 per cent more on furniture this August.

Food and beverage stores: This August, supermarket sales were up 11.4 per cent, convenience store sales were up 8.4 per cent, specialty food store sales were up 6.3 per cent and beer, wine and liquor store sales were up 6.6 per cent.

Used car dealers: Used car dealers sold 10.3 per cent more this August than August 2019.

Auto parts: Canadians spent 6.1 per cent more on auto parts this August.

Electronics and appliance stores: Electronics and appliance stores sold 7.7 per cent more this August.

DOING WORSE

Clothing and clothing accessory stores: Clothing stores fared worst in this category, selling 13.6 per cent less nationally than in August 2019. Shoe sales dropped by 12.2 per cent, while jewelry, luggage and leather good stores sold 0.2 per cent less than last August.

Bars and restaurants: Food service sales, including at full-service restaurants, limited-service eating places, special food services and drinking places, were 26.6 per cent lower in Ontario this August than last year.

New car dealers: New car dealers did not fare as well as used car dealers this August, selling 0.8 per cent less than in 2019.

Movie theatres: Cineplex, one of Canada’s largest theatre chains, laid off employees, cut employee salaries, and introduced other cost-saving measures this year after theatres were forced to temporarily close due to the pandemic. Kinepolis Group, which owns 44 Landmark Cinemas locations in Canada, reported its revenue dropped by 52.7 per cent in the second half of 2020.