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Annual retail trade, 2013

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Released: 2015-12-16

Store and non-store retailers generated $530.3 billion in operating revenue in 2013. More than half of retail operating revenue was generated in three subsectors, with motor vehicle and parts dealers accounting for 22.5%, food and beverage stores for 21.4% and gasoline stations for 12.1%.

Store retailers are divided into chain stores and non-chain stores. Chain stores, defined as operating four or more locations within the same industry group and under the same legal ownership, accounted for 46.6% of retail store operating revenue.

Among retail subsectors, clothing and clothing accessories stores had the highest profit margin at 7.8%. In comparison, motor vehicle and parts dealers recorded the lowest profit margin (2.4%).

Managing inventory levels is one of the ways that retail stores control their costs. A key measure that they use is inventory turnover, or the amount of times in a year that they turn over their inventory. Store retailers turned over their inventory (cost of goods sold divided by the average inventory value) 5.9 times in 2013.

The cost of goods sold by retailers totalled $387.9 billion, or 73.1% of their operating revenue. The next highest expense item was total labour remuneration, at $57.6 billion, or 10.9% of operating revenue.

Non-store retailers accounted for 3.6% of retail operating revenue. The vast majority of sales were in the fuel dealers industry (52.6%) and in the electronic shopping and mail-order houses industry group (32.7%). The remaining sales were made up by other direct selling establishments (10.9%) and vending machine operators (3.7%).

In-store sales continued to account for the vast majority of retail operating revenue at 92.6%. E-commerce sales totalled $9.8 billion, or 1.8% of retail operating revenue.

  Note to readers

CANSIM tables 080-0028 to 080-0032 are replacing CANSIM tables 080-0012, 080-0013, 080-0023, 080-0025 and 080-0026, which have been terminated with this release.

Changes in methodology were made to the Annual Retail Trade Survey and the Annual Retail Non-store Survey. Users should, therefore, exercise caution when comparing 2013 data with historical datasets. For more information on the methodology changes, consult the document on the Integrated Business Statistics Program in the Behind the data feature of our website.

Beginning with this release, data are based on the 2012 North American Industrial Classification System.

The publication Annual Retail Trade (Catalogue number63-270-X) is no longer available. Data from the Annual Retail Trade Survey and the Annual Retail Non-store Survey will now be released in CANSIM.

This release combines data from the Annual Retail Trade Survey and the Annual Retail Non-store Survey. The operating profit is obtained by subtracting total operating expenses and the cost of goods sold from total operating revenues. The ratio is expressed as a percentage of the total operating revenues. The gross margin is the difference between total operating revenue and the cost of goods sold.

Contact information

For more information, or to enquire about the concepts, methods or data quality of this release, contact us (toll-free 1-800-263-1136; 514-283-8300; STATCAN.infostats-infostats.STATCAN@canada.ca) or Media Relations (613-951-4636; STATCAN.mediahotline-ligneinfomedias.STATCAN@canada.ca).

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