OTTAWA — Statistics Canada says retail sales dropped 0.6 per cent to $55.8 billion in July as sales at supermarkets and grocery stores fell with more people returning to restaurants and patios.
However, the agency says its initial estimate for August suggests retail sales gained 2.1 per cent for that month, but cautioned the figure will be revised.
Retail sales in July fell in five of 11 subsectors with sales at food and beverage stores down 3.4 per cent.
Sales at building material and garden equipment and supplies dealers were down 7.3 per cent for the month, but remained elevated compared with pre-pandemic levels.
Statistics Canada says core retail sales — which exclude gasoline stations and motor vehicle and parts dealers — fell 1.3 per cent for the month.
Retail sales in volume terms fell 1.1 per cent in July.