Our figure of the month 07/2020: Implications of COVID-19 pandemic on wholesale selling prices

The COVID-19 pandemic also has far-reaching effects on the wholesale trade, whereby the wholesale segments are affected differently.

While the consequences of the production restrictions in Germany and worldwide are mainly evident in the production-related trade, wholesalers, who act as intermediaries between the consumer goods industry, retailers as well as hotels and restaurants, are more affected by the forced closures, especially in restaurant and hotel industry. On the other hand, wholesalers, who supply supermarkets and pharmacies, among others, temporarily benefit.

The interplay between demand and supply in the individual segments of the wholesale trade changes wholesale selling prices: Between January and April 2020 these are in a downward trend overall in wholesale. Compared with the same period of the previous year, they fell by -1.4%.

Prices fell most sharply by -6% in the "Wholesale of information and communication technology equipment" (WZ 46.5), followed by "Other wholesale" (WZ 46.7) by -5%, with "Wholesale of waste and scrap" (WZ 46.77: -25%) and "Wholesale of solid fuels and petroleum products" (WZ 46.71: -9%) showing the biggest reductions. The latter decline is due to the collapse of the world market price of crude oil and the lower demand for energy, which is the consequence of both lower economic activity and restrained mobility.

Compared to the same period of the previous year, price increases were recorded in the segments "Wholesale of agricultural raw materials and live animals" (WZ 46.2: +1.5%), "Wholesale of food, beverages and tobacco" (WZ 46.3: +1.6%) and "Wholesale of other machinery, equipment and supplies" (WZ 46.6: +1.4%).

Other figures can be found here.

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