SINGAPOREANS are returning to their favourite pastime – shopping.
They spent an estimated S$2.12bil (RM4.7bil) in February, according to statistics from the Retail Sales Index, a 34.2% increase from the S$1.58bil (RM3.5bil) recorded in February last year.
The data, culled from monthly surveys of 14 sectors, showed the biggest jumps in the amounts spent on cars – which saw an increase of 124.6 percentage points – and watches and jewellery, which rose 32.2 percentage points.
Association of Small and Medium Enterprises president Lawrence Leow, 46, put the increase in spending down to improving sentiment among consumers about the state of the economy.
But Singapore Retailers Association executive director Lau Chuen Wei, 48, said the surge was more likely a result of the post-Chinese New Year sales.
“People are still cautious about how they spend their money.”
Both said the Monetary Authority of Singapore’s plan to allow the value of the Singapore dollar to rise should help boost spending further. – The Straits Times/Asia News Network