German retail sales drop for 2nd month in a row, underlining concerns over export reliance

BERLIN – German retail sales dropped for the second month in a row in October, underlining concerns abroad that Europe’s largest economy is overly dependent on its exports to drive growth.

The Federal Statistical Office reported Friday that retail sales were down 0.8 per cent compared with September when adjusted for calendar and seasonal factors. They dropped 0.2 per cent the previous month.

The U.S. recently urged Germany to try to boost domestic demand, saying its large trade surplus was causing problems for its eurozone partners.

Varengold Bank analyst Anita Paluch says after two months of retail sales drops it is “too early to call it a trend” but that the figures are “definitely concerning.” Still, a monthly survey released this week showed a rise in consumer confidence.