Czech retail sales declined for a third month in May, confirming fading consumer demand that pushed the central bank to cut interest rates to a record low last week.
Retail sales eased 2.1 percent from a year ago, compared with a 4.1 percent decline in April, the Prague-based Czech Statistics Office said in a statement on its website today. The reading was better than the median forecast of a 3.5 percent drop in a Bloomberg survey of 11 analysts.
The central bank cut the benchmark interest rate by a quarter of a percentage point to 0.5 percent last week as government measures to cut the budget deficit curtail domestic demand and will further depress household spending next year.
The economy, where exports account for about 80 percent of output, shrank 0.8 percent in the first quarter from the previous three months, after a 0.2 percent contraction in the final quarter last year.
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