Retail registers highest monthly increase in May. But it’s not enough

retail sales brazil pandemic
Commercial street in Bauru, São Paulo. Photo: Alf Ribeiro

Brazil’s retail sales index bounced back in May after registering their worst result ever in April — a direct consequence of the coronavirus-imposed crisis. According to the Brazilian Institute of Geography and Statistics, sales increased 13.9 percent. When vehicles and construction industry materials are thrown into the equation, the index rise was even steeper, at 19.6 percent.

The numbers are better than the median 5.9-percent projection made by economists surveyed by Bloomberg. However, the bump is still not enough to bring the retail sector back to its pre-pandemic standing.