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Eurozone Retail Sales Growth Remains Robust On Lower Oil Prices, Higher Incomes

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Eurozone retail sales grew for a second straight month in November and at a faster-than-expected pace, supported by lower oil prices and rising wages.

Retail sales rose a seasonally adjusted 0.6 percent from October, when sales increased at the same pace, figures from Eurostat showed Monday. October sales growth was earlier reported as 0.3 percent. Economists had forecast 0.2 percent growth.

Sales of clothing and footwear logged the biggest growth of 2.7 percent followed by those of electrical goods and furniture with an increase of 1.5 percent.

Growth in automotive fuel sales more than doubled to 1.2 percent from 0.5 percent.

Meanwhile, sales of food, drinks and tobacco decreased 0.9 percent, after rising in the previous month.

Compared to the same month last year, retail sales grew a calendar adjusted 1.1 percent in November, after a 2.3 percent increase in October, revised from 1.7 percent.

In the fourth quarter, euro area retail sales are set for a modest gain after stagnating in the third quarter, ING economist Bert Colijn said.

"Oil prices have dropped significantly and wage growth is on the rise, making real disposable income growth look pretty good for Europeans," the economist said.

"Continued uncertainty will curb the upside potential of household consumption, but at times when most indicators paint a bleak picture of where Eurozone growth is headed, retail sales show that consumption could be an important driver of continued growth."

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