The volume of retail trade in the European Union rose by 0.2 per cent in November 2012, according to estimates from Eurostat, the bloc’s statistical office. Retail trade in the 17 countries that make up the euro zone was 0.1 per cent up.
The indicator bounced back from a lacklustre October, when it fell by 0.7 per cent both in the euro area and the EU as a whole, Eurostat said.
Despite the increase, retail trade was down on an annual basis. In November 2012, compared with November 2011, the retail sales index dropped by 2.6 per cent in the euro area and by 1.3 per cent in the EU as a whole, according to Eurostat data.
Food, drinks and tobacco trade led the slide, falling by 2.1 per cent in the euro area and by 1.4 per cent in the bloc as a whole. The non-food sector was down by 3.2 per cent and 0.9 per cent, respectively.
Among the EU countries for which data are available, total retail trade fell in 11 and rose in 10. The largest decreases were observed in Spain (-9.6 per cent), Slovenia (-6.1 cent), Bulgaria and Portugal (both at -5.2 per cent), and the highest increases were in Latvia (+8.7 per cent), Belgium (+4.5 per cent) and Estonia (+4.3 per cent).
(Photo: Steve Ford/sxc.hu)