Sweden forgoes lockdown protecting 2020 retail spend

Sweden’s retail market is set to be one of the better performing in Europe in 2020, only marginally declining 0.4%, as it is yet to impose a lockdown (and does not plan to) in contrast to many other European countries including Spain, Italy, France and the UK, says GlobalData, a leading data and analytics company.

Emily Salter, Retail Analyst at GlobalData, comments: “Although retail spend in Sweden this year is now set to fall, in comparison to pre-COVID 19 forecasts when it was predicted to rise 3.2%, it will outperform many other European countries that have closed non-essential retail stores for a number of weeks. Sweden will fare better than neighbour Denmark which, despite already starting to ease restrictions of its lockdown, is forecast to experience a 4.4% decline in its total retail spend in 2020.


With shops largely remaining open in Sweden due to the current voluntary social distancing measures instead of an enforced lockdown, stockpiling of essential commodities has been low, but consumers have been buying more items with long shelf lives including pasta & noodles, to avoid venturing out more often than needed.

Salter continues: “Within the 0.4% fall in total retail spend, sectors will fare significantly differently. Food sales are increasing as consumers are encouraged to stay at home, as are health products as shoppers prepare for the impact of COVID-19 although the majority of this spend will be brought forward as shoppers stockpile. Fashion is the sector that we expect to be the hardest hit as consumers lack events to get dressed up for, but this impact will be softer than in countries with enforced lockdowns.”

More Media