Store sales in Germany increased again in February, after another plus in the previous month. According to figures from the German Federal Statistical Office, retail sales increased by 1.2 percent on a monthly basis. That much stronger than expected rise was largely caused by hoarding things like shelf-stable food and toilet paper with a view to a possible lockdown.

Economists had generally expected a minimal increase of 0.1 percent. They were also wrong with the annual increase. This came out at an increase of 6.4 percent where economists had foreseen a plus of 1.5 percent.

More sales were made in all types of shops, but the increase was particularly noticeable in the sale of food, drink and tobacco. Of those categories, 7.8 percent more sales were made than in February last year. Supermarkets benefited most from this, their turnover increased by 8.3 percent. Sales of things other than food also rose by 5.6 percent. Drugstores and pharmacies noticed the most. Their turnover increased by 6.6 percent.

In January, German retail sales had increased by 0.9 percent. On an annual basis there was a plus of 1.8 percent.

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