Last update: 4 March 2021

The EU Regulation on 'short-term statistics' (Council Regulation No 1165/98 of 19 May concerning short-term statistics) and the related methodological manual (Methodology of short-term statistics, Eurostat) impose a uniform reporting obligation on volume changes in the monthly retail sales of the European Union member countries – as an important leading indicator.

Source of data:

mandatory data collection titled 'Report No. 1045 on the sales turnover of retail trade and catering services' of the National Data Collection Program (OSAP) ordered by the government,

online cash machine (OPG) data,

VAT data to estimate mail order and internet retail sales as well as market and other non-store retail sales

monthly data of the National Tobacco Trading Nonprofit Company to determine the turnover of specialized tobacco shops (from 1 July 2013).

Scope of data providers: enterprises operating shops (regardless of their main activity and legal form).

The data collection is based on operating licenses issued by local governments as well as on the HCSO aggregate register of officially declared activities (Commercial Register). In the data collection, the scope of data providers consists of two parts. The following units are in the so-called full-scope part: enterprises with at least 50 employees operating at least 6 shops; enterprises operating at least 8 shops regardless of the number of employees; enterprises with a significant floor area of shops in the relevant field of activity.

There will be two types of questionnaires:

a 'simplified' one for those enterprises whose shops (all of them) are under the Decree and do not engage in any other activity, these enterprises have to report the number of their shops, and the sum of the turnover of the retail trade, catering and online orders and home deliveries;

and the original 'full' questionnaire for the rest of the full scoped enterprises and for the population not covered by the Decree and surveyed by simple random sampling.

All other shops are selected by a stratified simple random systematic sample. Among shops in the sample a 25–30% rotation is performed per year. Smaller sample adjustments are made in every six months with the selection of new shops to replace liquidated shops.

Observation unit: a shop to sell retail items mainly to households.

Imputation: missing data are imputed primarily by projecting previous period data, in the absence of that by using an environmental-average or by data derived from other sources in case of key data providers.

Data correction, revisions: data may differ from the previously published data because of retrospective corrections of faulty data provided earlier as well as the subsequent acceptance of data sent after the deadline.

Retail sales: the value of the sale of goods in the retail network at consumer prices.

Retail volume index: it shows changes in retail sales turnover by eliminating the effect of price changes. The retail price index is calculated on the basis of the representatives of consumer price monitoring and of retail sales weights.

Seasonal adjustment: it is made by DEMETRA-software and TRAMO-SEATS method; due to the nature of this method the adjusted (calendar-adjusted, seasonally adjusted as well as the trend) volume indices may be modified retrospectively. More information»

Publication of our data:

first estimate (35 days after the reference month): data on retail sales

final, revised data (one year after the reference month).

Due to NGM Decree 48/2013. (hereafter Decree) enterprises operating cash machines involved in the online cash register system (OPG) are obliged to send online information about their sales to the National Tax and Customs Administration (NTCA). The use of online cash register (OPG) data provides us with administrative data, allowing to replace previous questionnaire data. Data transmission is based on a HCSO-NTCA agreement.

The turnover for year 2016 was first estimated according to the new methodology, in which online cash register data were also used. Turnover data for year 2015 were backcasted using volume indices produced according to the former methodology. As a result, volume indices for 2016 change first (data of pharmaceutical, medical goods and cosmetics shops changed one year later due to data quality).

Under EU Regulation 2019/2152 on European Business Statistics, repealing 10 legal acts in the field of business statistics and EU Regulation 2020/1197 on implementation thereof, from 2021, retail sales should include retail sales via stalls and markets1 (TEOR08 47.8) and other retail sale not in stores, stalls or markets (47.99), within the non-food group. For comparability, data on market and other non-store retail sales are available at current prices from 2019, while volume index data are available from 2020 onwards. This regulatory change increases current price turnover by 0.6-0.8%, while it has no significant effect on the volume index2.