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South Africa’s retail sales continued to decline in January, data from Statistics South Africa showed on Wednesday.

Retail sales fell 3.5 percent year-on-year in January, following a 1.2 percent decrease in December. Economists had forecast a 2.4 percent decline.

The biggest negative contribution came from retailers in food, beverages and tobacco in specialized stores, all ‘other’ retailers, and general dealers.

On a month-on-month basis, retail sales fell 1.6 percent in January, after a 0.8 percent decline in the previous month.

In the three months ended in January, retail sales increased 0.9 percent, after a 2.7 percent rise in the preceding three months.


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