World Economy

Brazil Retail Sales Drop

Brazil Retail  Sales DropBrazil Retail  Sales Drop

Retail sales in Brazil fell for a second straight month in August even as supermarket sales firmed, government data showed on Tuesday, in another sign of weakness as the economy struggles to emerge from recession. Retail sales volumes excluding cars and building materials fell 0.6% in August from July after seasonal adjustments in line with forecasts in a Reuters poll, statistics agency IBGE said. Sales fell 5.5% from the year-earlier period, down from a decline of 5.3% in July and compared with expectations for a 5% drop. Sales dropped in six of the eight sectors covered by IBGE, with the biggest declines in office equipment, pharmaceuticals, furniture and books. However, supermarket and food sales, which account for the biggest slice of consumer spending, rose 0.8% from July, as food prices started to ease from a surprise increase earlier this year. High unemployment and interest rates have hurt retailers even as prospects of an economic recovery lifted consumer confidence off record lows.


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