Entry from 02.02.24

UBS Retail Outlook: Positive signs for the Zurich retail sector

In recent weeks and months, Zurich’s retail sector has been plagued by numerous negative headlines. Yet the new UBS Retail Outlook shows that the indications for a successful financial year 2024 are favorable.

UBS Retail Outlook 2024: positive signs for the Zurich retail sector

The latest figures from the UBS Retail Outlook show a pleasing increase in nominal retail sales in 2023. At City Vereinigung Zürich, we see this as a positive trend for the future of Zurich’s city center. According to UBS estimates, the retail sector recorded total sales growth of 1.2% compared to the previous year.

Fortunately, the global supply chain problems in the non-food sector have increasingly eased, leading to a corresponding fall in inflation. The peak of inflation in the food sector is probably already behind us. Commodity prices (energy, staple foods, fertilizer), which rose in connection with the Russia-Ukraine war, have fallen significantly below their high levels in 2022. As a result, food prices are also likely to stabilize again in 2024. At City Vereinigung Zürich we are pleased to note that, despite higher prices in the food/near-food segment, considerable growth of 2.4% was recorded in 2023. This development not only reflects the increase in purchasing power, but also underlines the attractiveness of Swiss retailers as a shopping destination for food and related products. The City Vereinigung Zürich is pleased with the positive signals sent out by this increase.

The renewed increase in demand in the personal care and health sector should also give Zurich’s retail trade hope. It is clear that consumers are not only responding to price incentives, but also value high-quality products and services. The forecast for 2024 is also promising. UBS expects a nominal increase in total sales of 1 percent, accompanied by real growth of 0.3 percent. As a result, we feel encouraged to further strengthen the city center as a shopping and experience destination.

Despite the current challenges for the retail trade, we remain optimistic and will continue to promote initiatives to increase the attractiveness of Zurich’s city center. With a strong focus on a high-quality shopping experience and innovative offers, we want to ensure that the retail trade in the city center can flourish and continue to inspire the people of Zurich. The UBS Retail Outlook clearly shows that this is still possible.