Retail revenues and expenses - Canadian Industry Statistics

Retail Trade - 44-45

The information on revenues, expenses and profits can be used as a benchmark against the performance of your business and can help you to identify opportunities to gain efficiencies.

Canada's total operating revenues reached $605.0 billion in 2017, increasing from $572.0 billion in 2016.

Sales represented 96.5% of total operating revenues in 2017, while other sources of revenues accounted for 3.5%.

Revenue by type
Revenue type 2013 2014 2015 2016 2017 % change 2016/2017
Sales $493.0B $519.0B $530.0B $552.0B $584.0B -0.1
Other operating revenues $22.0B $19.7B $20.0B $19.1B $21.0B 9.8
Total operating revenues $515.0B $539.0B $550.0B $572.0B $605.0B 5.8

Source: Statistics Canada, tables 20-10-0066-01 and 20-10-0068-01, Annual Retail Trade Survey.
Estimates for 2017 are preliminary. Preliminary data are subject to revision.

Nationally, cost of goods sold represented 77.2% of total expenses for 2017. Total labour remuneration accounted for 11.2%, and other operating expenses 11.6%.

Expense by type
Expense type 2013 2014 2015 2016 2017 % change 2016/2017
Costs of goods sold $376.0B $397.0B $402.0B $418.0B $444.0B 6.3
Labour remuneration $56.3B $57.3B $59.7B $61.4B $64.7B 5.4
Other operating expenses $58.1B $58.6B $60.9B $64.0B $66.5B 3.9
Total expenses $491.0B $513.0B $523.0B $543.0B $575.0B 5.9

Source: Statistics Canada, tables 20-10-0066-01 and 20-10-0068-01, Annual Retail Trade Survey.
Estimates for 2017 are preliminary. Preliminary data are subject to revision.

At the Canada level, this industry generated $29.4 billion in net revenue, increasing from $28.4 billion in 2016, or by 3.7%.

The profit margin is one way to measure profitability. It is a ratio of net revenues to total revenues (i.e. net revenues as a percentage of total revenues). In 2017, Canada's pre-tax profit margin in this industry was 4.9%.

Net revenue
Category 2013 2014 2015 2016 2017 % change 2016/2017
Total operating revenues $515.0B $539.0B $550.0B $572.0B $605.0B 5.8
Total expenses $491.0B $513.0B $523.0B $543.0B $575.0B 5.9
Net revenues $24.1B $25.9B $27.1B $28.4B $29.4B 3.7

Source: Statistics Canada, tables 20-10-0066-01 and 20-10-0068-01, Annual Retail Trade Survey.
Estimates for 2017 are preliminary. Preliminary data are subject to revision.

In 2017, Canada's Chain store revenues were $269.0 billion with expenses of $250.0 billion. Net revenues for Chain stores were $18.7 billion with pre-tax profit margin of 6.9%.

Canada's Non chain store revenues were $335.0 billion with expenses of $325.0 billion in 2017. Net revenues for Non chain stores were $10.7 billion with pre-tax profit margin of 3.2%.

Chain store revenues represented 44.5% of total revenues generated in the industry, with 55.5% by Non chained stores.

Chain vs. non chain stores
Chain stores Non chain stores Total all stores
Year Revenues Expenses Net revenues Profit margin (%) Revenues Expenses Net revenues Profit margin (%) Revenues Expenses Net revenues Profit margin (%)
2013 $239.0B $222.0B $16.5B 6.9 $276.0B $269.0B $7.5B 2.7 $515.0B $491.0B $24.1B 4.7
2014 $249.0B $231.0B $17.3B 7.0 $290.0B $282.0B $8.6B 3.0 $539.0B $513.0B $25.9B 4.8
2015 $249.0B $232.0B $17.9B 7.2 $300.0B $291.0B $9.2B 3.0 $550.0B $523.0B $27.1B 4.9
2016 $259.0B $239.0B $19.4B 7.5 $313.0B $304.0B $8.9B 2.9 $572.0B $543.0B $28.4B 5.0
2017 $269.0B $250.0B $18.7B 6.9 $335.0B $325.0B $10.7B 3.2 $605.0B $575.0B $29.4B 4.9

Source: Statistics Canada, tables 20-10-0066-01 and 20-10-0068-01, Annual Retail Trade Survey.
Estimates for 2017 are preliminary. Preliminary data are subject to revision.

  • Notes

    The data in this section comes from Statistics Canada's Annual Retail Trade Survey. Statistics Canada has introduced important improvements to the methods and processes used to compile economic statistics. As a result, it should be noted that their comparability to previously terminated series has been impacted. Users are advised to use caution in making comparisons between the two sets of estimates.

    Operating revenues are revenues that are derived from the regular operations of a business. Revenues from non-operating sources such as interest and dividends are excluded. The primary source of operating revenues for the vast majority of retail businesses is sales. Other sources of operating revenues can include commissions, manufacturing sales, labour revenues, revenues from rental and leasing, etc.

    Operating expenses are charges that are produced as a result of the regular operations of a business. Among the operating expenses, total labour remuneration is typically the largest category. Other sources of operating expenses can include rental and leasing expenses, advertising, depreciation, management fees, etc. Expenses from non-operating sources such as interest expenses are excluded.

    (Net revenue) An estimate of the pre-tax profitability of the Retail Trade sector can be obtained by subtracting total expenses from total operating revenues. While this calculation will not match balance sheet information exactly, it does provide a reasonable estimate.

    A distinction can be made between chain store retailers and non-chain store retailers. Retail store chains are defined as organizations operating four or more outlets in the same industry class under the same legal name. Non chain retail stores include independent and franchise establishments only.

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