German retail sales gain 6.3 pct on month in June

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Retail sales in Germany, the biggest European economy, gained a whopping 6.3 percent in June from the previous month, data released Friday by the national statistics office showed.

Analysts polled by Dow Jones Newswires had forecast a much more modest increase of 1.7 percent on the month, but economists agree that the indicator is very volatile and subject to frequent revisions.

On a 12-month basis, retail sales fell by 1.0 percent in June, but the Destatis office noted that there were 24 business days in June 2011, compared with 26 in June 2010.

ING senior economist Carsten Brzeski felt that the the data "show that German consumers are finally waking up."

"Of course, the rather discouraging track record of German retail sales is reason enough not to get overly excited," Brzeski added.

The figures nonetheless still "offer some glimmer of hope that at least the German economy is heading towards a soft, not hard, landing," he said.

© 2011 AFP

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