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October 6, 2010    

Euro zone retail sales in surprise fall

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by Kay Murchie
Euro zone retail sales in surprise fall

The European Union’s statistics office, Eurostat, has today revealed sales in the euro zone fell 0.4% in August on the month - raising fears about the strength of the economic recovery.

The fall represented the first since April and was weaker than analysts had forecast.

Consumer confidence in the 16-member euro zone remains low as many Governments have introduced tough austerity measures to tackle their deficits.

However, this has meant cuts to wages and pensions, which has severely dented confidence. Furthermore, unemployment remains high, with the jobless rate at 10.1%.

In related news, a survey by the European Commission revealed consumers’ willingness to make major purchases in the next 12 months fell to a record low.

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