Retail in Europe made modest gains in November

Jan. 8, 2014 at 9:33 AM

BRUSSELS, Jan. 8 (UPI) -- Retail sales rose modestly in Europe from October to November, the European Commission's data office Eurostat said Wednesday.

After slight drops in September and October, retail sales rose 1.4 percent in the 17 countries that used the euro as currency last year and 1.2 percent in the 28-member European Union, Eurostat said. Latvia joined the eurozone on New Year's Day bringing membership to 18 nations.

Retail sales were up 1.6 percent in the eurozone and 2 percent higher in the EU from November 2012.

On an annual basis, sales of food, drinks and tobacco rose 1.4 percent in the eurozone and 1.1 percent in the EU. Non-food sales rose 1.9 percent and 1.7 percent, respectively, the agency said.

Eurostat said retail rose in 19 member states and fell 2.1 percent in Malta and 0.3 percent in Romania on an annual basis.

The highest gains were in Luxembourg, up 12.6 percent, Portugal with a gain of 7.2 percent and Spain and Poland, both with gains of 1.9 percent.

Data was unavailable from the Czech Republic, Ireland, Greece, Croatia, Italy, Cyprus, and the Netherlands.

In the region's largest economy, Germany, sales rose 1.5 percent from October. In France and Britain, sales rose 2.1 percent and 0.3 percent, respectively, compared to October.

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