Feb 1, 2022
German retail sales slump in December as Covid measures hit trade
Feb 1, 2022
German retail sales dropped more than expected in December, data showed on Tuesday, as tighter coronavirus-related restrictions hurt trade in textiles, clothing, shoes and leather goods.
The Federal Statistics Office said retail sales - a volatile indicator often subject to revisions - tumbled 5.5% on the month in real terms, compared with a Reuters forecast for a fall of 1.4%.
"The December decline is probably related to the fact many retail outlets have started asking for proof of COVID-19 vaccination or recovery, and the impact of seasonal adjustment due to Christmas," the statistics office said in a statement.
On the year, retail sales adjusted for prices remained stable, compared with analysts' average forecast for an increase of 1.1%, according to a Reuters poll.
Compared with February 2020, the month before the coronavirus crisis hit Germany, retail sales in December 2021 were up 0.7%.
At the same time, businesses hope for a probable decline in coronavirus cases in spring to ease supply bottlenecks and brighten the outlook for the coming months.
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