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Economy in Brief

German Retail Sales are a DISASTER in November
by Robert Brusca January 9, 2008

So much for strong German orders…. there is no carry over to the consumer. Retail sales in Germany are a disaster. We are 10 months away from the phase in of the VAT hike in January of 2007. That is why the Yr/Yr decline is still so severe on the chart – the base is a pre VAT base in Nov of 2006. It is not really not comparable to the 3-Mo and the 6-Mo results which are both with base periods that are well beyond the VAT hike period. Still 3-Mo and 6-Mo real retail sales growth rates are weaker that their 12-month pace. This is not a good sign.

Two months into Q4 German real retail sales (ex autos) are declining at an 8.2% annual rate. Nominal clothing and footwear spending is off in the quarter at a 23% rate. November sales were a disaster.

German Real and Nominal Retail Sales New Qtr
Nominal Nov-07 Oct-07 Sep-07 3-Mo 6-Mo 12-Mo Year Ago SAAR
Retail excl Auto -0.6% -1.9% 1.1% -5.7% -1.5% -1.7% 6.1% -8.2%
Motor Vehicle and Parts #N/A 0.2% -2.0% #N/A #N/A #N/A 21.0% #N/A
Food Beverages & Tobacco -2.3% 0.1% 1.4% -3.2% -2.0% 0.2% 3.2% -1.4%
Clothing footwear -0.8% -8.3% 5.6% -15.1% 1.1% -1.2% 5.7% -23.0%
Real                
Retail excl Auto -1.3% -2.3% 0.8% -10.7% -4.6% -3.8% 5.6% -12.6%
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