European retail sales growth slowed in June, led by decreasing demand from Ireland to Spain and Germany, adding to signs of the euro-region fiscal crisis undermining household spending.
Sales gained 0.1 from May, when they rose 0.8 percent, the European Union’s statistics office in Luxembourg said today. Economists forecast a drop of 0.1 percent, according to the median of 17 estimates in a Bloomberg News survey. From a year earlier, sales dropped 1.2 percent.
European consumers may keep spending plans on hold as governments toughen austerity measures and some of the region’s largest companies including Deutsche Bank AG and PSA Peugeot Citroen eliminate jobs. Euro-area unemployment held at a record high in June and economic confidence dropped last month, adding to signs the economy is edging toward recession. A gauge of service industries showed a contraction in July.
In France, the euro area’s second-largest economy after Germany, retail sales rose 0.7 percent from May, when they increased 2.1 percent, today’s report showed. German sales fell 0.1 percent in the month. Ireland and Spain, which both received external aid, reported drops of 2.2 percent and 0.1 percent from May, respectively.
The statistics office didn’t report data for Greece, Cyprus or Italy.
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