The retail sector took a worse-than-expected pummelling in July, as civil unrest in parts of KwaZulu-Natal and Gauteng left big brands such as Massmart and Clicks counting the cost of damaged shops and looted distributions centres, compounded by the tail effects of the Covid-19 third wave.

Retail trade sales shrank 0.8% year-on-year in July, Stats SA showed on Wednesday — far worse than the 3.3% growth forecast by a Bloomberg poll of economists, and down from June’s revised 10.5% expansion. ..

BL Premium

This article is reserved for our subscribers.

A subscription helps you enjoy the best of our business content every day along with benefits such as articles from our international business news partners; ProfileData financial data; and digital access to the Sunday Times and Sunday Times Daily.

Already subscribed? Simply sign in below.

Questions or problems? Email or call 0860 52 52 00. Got a subscription voucher? Redeem it now