Dublin’s retail sector experienced a modest recovery in the second quarter of 2021, following an exceptionally difficult start to the year, research shows.
The Mastercard SpendingPulse survey showed that retail spending rose by 5.1% quarter-on-quarter and was no doubt aided by the lifting of restrictions on domestic travel and commercial activity.
The main trends were towards bricks-and-mortar outlets with expenditure in the Discretionary and Entertainment categories expanding quarter-on-quarter by 61% and 21.3% respectively – albeit from historically low bases.
According to the research, such increases underline the willingness of Dublin consumers to return to physical outlets, hotels, bars and restaurants post-pandemic, and these trends will be expected to strengthen as vaccination numbers rise and tourism gathers momentum.
Growth in Household Goods expenditure was also exceptionally strong, rising by 20.6% quarter-on-quarter, the survey showed.
This is, in ways, the most significant shift in quarter two as it underlines the continued confidence of Dublin consumers to spend on ‘big ticket’ items – in spite of increased opportunities to spend elsewhere in the economy.
Necessities spending increased by 5.3% quarter-on-quarter, yet a notable quarter-on-quarter decline of 2.6% was recorded in eCommerce.
"The extreme positive growth rates for overall retail sales were expected as we compare with the COVID-19 related restrictions in 2020," said Michael McNamara global head of SpendingPulse, Mastercard.
"From a sector perspective we are seeing spending rebalance as spending returns to the discretionary sectors that were largely shut down over the past year," he added.