Germany’s stricter lockdown sinks retail sales in December By Reuters

© Reuters. FILE PHOTO: Outbreak of the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) in Berlin

BERLIN (Reuters) – German retail sales plunged far more than expected in December as a decision to tighten lockdown measures in the COVID-19 pandemic choked consumer spending in Europe’s largest economy, data showed on Monday.

The Federal Statistics Office said retail sales fell 9.6% on the month in real terms after an downwardly revised increase of 1.1% in November. The December reading undershot a Reuters forecast for a drop of 2.6%.

Still, retail sales rose 3.9% on the year in real terms in the full year of 2020 despite the pandemic, the office said. That was slightly below a previous estimate of 4.1%.


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