It wasn’t exactly shop till you drop, but there was good news for eurozone retailers in July.
Sales rose quite a bit more than expected, posting the largest monthly increase this year.
According to Eurostat retail sales – which are a guide to overall household spending – were up by 1.1 percent compared to June when there was a 0.1 percent fall.
And they increased by 2.9 percent from July last year.
Consumers seemed to have shrugged off post-Brexit vote uncertainty and the fact that the euro area’s two biggest economies – Germany and France – are showing signs of slowing down.
No Brexit vote effect
The boost in retail sales came in the month following the June 23 Brexit referendum, in a sign that consumers’ morale was not immediately hit by the British vote to leave the EU.
Monthly retail sales in the European Union as a whole were also the strongest of the year in July, growing 1.0 percent during the month, after a 0.2 percent fall in June. In Britain sales increased 1.3 percent in July after a 0.8 percent drop in June.
In the eurozone, monthly sales were boosted mostly by a 1.8 percent spike in consumer purchases of car fuel. Retail sales of food, drinks and tobacco products went up 1.1 percent.