MONDAY, AUG. 20: Inflation pushed retail sales up by 0.5 per cent in June but actual sales activity decreased.

Consumers spent 91.1 million in June 2012, which was $0.4 million more than the same month in 2011. However, almost all sectors of the market reported declines in sales activity with food and liquor stores being two of the exceptions. The actual volume of sales was off 1.1 per cent.

This according to the Retail Sales Index produced by Government’s Department of Statistics.

Four of the six months this year have reported increases in retail sales value but most of that is eaten away when inflation is taken into account with just one month, February, showing an actual increase in volume.

Overseas purchases declared by residents was up 2.0 per cent ($100,000), marking the first time in eight months there was an increase.

Liquor sales were up 9.5 per cent for the month and food sales increased by 8.7 per cent with the cost of fruit and vegetables leading the way.

The all other store types sector was a mixed bag with tourist related stores showing a decrease of 9.9 per cent and pharmaceutical products down 2.8 per cent.

But receipts for boat and marine supplies jumped 80.1 per cent and retailers of furniture appliances and electronics up 4.9 per cent.

It was more bad news for the motor vehicles sector with sales down 18.7 per cent with 12 fewer cars sold, but 37 more motorcycles were sold.

Apparel stores were down 6.7 per cent, marking the third straight monthly decline.

The building materials sector had its first decrease since August 2011 as sales receipts plummeted 16.8 per cent.

Service station sales fell 5.2 per cent.