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Economy in Brief

Brazil's Retail Sales Up 10% in May
by Carol Stone July 15, 2004

Brazil's retail sales extended a strong recovery in data reported today for May, which showed a third straight month of double-digit year-on-year growth.

Furniture and appliances and motor vehicle dealers have participated in the growth consistently in recent months; the two store categories advanced 35.6% and 21.4% respectively in May from May 2003. Supermarkets and hypermarkets have also shown persistent but less spectacular gains, most recently in the 5% range. In May, clothing had a big jump as well.

These stores had all suffered some degree of contraction during the recessionary aftermath of the mid-2002 plunge in Brazil's currency value. The recent retail sales gains, particularly in durable goods, show that Brazilian consumers are back in a shopping mode, and with some exuberance.

Yr/Yr % Changes May 2004 Apr 2004 Mar 2004 2003 2002 2001
Retail Sales: Total Volume 10.0 10.1 11.0 3.2 -5.1 -2.8
Retail Sales: Total Value 10.3 9.4 11.3 10.8 9.3 3.7
Reais/US$ 4.9 -6.8 -15.7 -19.3 53.5 20.4
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