CAIRO: A fall in food and beverage sales helped fuel a 15.8 percent drop in point-of-sale transactions in Saudi Arabia in the week ending Oct. 8 — the steepest drop for three months.
The latest weekly data from the Saudi Central Bank revealed the Kingdom’s citizens’ aggregate spending fell by SR2 billion ($0.53 billion) to reach SR10.8 billion over the seven-day period.
Every one of the 17 mentioned sectors witnessed a decline, led by the SR421.3 million drop in food and beverages, which reached SR1.7 billion last week.
- Other — Down SR385.8 million; up SR382.3 million previous week.
- Miscellaneous goods and services — Down SR204.3 million; up SR342.9 million previous week.
- Health — Down SR168.1 million; up SR219.6 million previous week.
- Transportation — Down 119.2 million; up SR164.3 million previous week.
- Furniture — Down SR112.3 million; up SR8.4 million previous week.
As for the number of POS transactions, they dropped by 6.6 million in the week ending in Oct. 8 to reach 154.4 million, according to data from the bank also known as SAMA.
That number declined across all sectors, primarily led by the 1.4 million fall of ‘Other’ transactions.
- Food and beverage — Down 1.2 million; up 4.4 million previous week.
- Restaurants and cafes — Down 0.7 million; up 3.7 million previous week.
- Clothing and footwear — Down 0.7 million; up 0.3 million previous week
- Miscellaneous goods and services — Down 0.5 million; up 0.3 million previous week.
Riyadh, which records the largest share of POS transactions, saw a 12.9 percent drop in the value of POS transactions in the week ending Oct. 8, compared to a 11.4 percent increase the week prior.
The Kingdom’s capital recorded a total POS transaction value of SR3.2 billion last week, down from SR3.9 billion the week before.
The city witnessed a 5.4 percent fall in the number of POS transactions in the week ending Oct. 8, compared to a 0.9 percent rise the previous week.
It recorded 54.5 million transactions, down from 57.6 million the week before, showed the SAMA data.
Jeddah, the second largest city in terms of POS, followed with SR1.6 billion worth of POS transactions which dropped by 14.2 percent in the week ending in Oct 8.
The number of transactions in the city reached 21.2 million, down from 21.9 million the week before.