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Brazilian retail sales grow 2.3 pct in 2018, best result since 2013
Last Updated: 2019-02-14 11:30 | Xinhua
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Brazil's retail sales, one of the country's economic engines, grew 2.3 percent in 2018 over the previous year, the best result since 2013, the state-run Brazilian Institute of Geography and Statistics (IBGE) said Wednesday.

According to IBGE's report, 2018 was the second consecutive year of retail sales growth, after an increase of 2.1 percent in 2017, and retail sales "had not seen such a high performance" since 2013.

The last two consecutive years of growth in the sector, however, were not able to compensate for the losses that occurred in 2015 and 2016, as it is now 7 percent below the level of 2014.

According to IBGE, three out of eight retail sales activities contributed to the positive results in 2018.

Sales of personal and household products grew by 7.6 percent, sales of pharmaceutical, medical, orthopedic, perfumery and cosmetics products increased by 5.9 percent, and food, beverages and tobacco sales grew by 3.8 percent.

In 2018, the growth of retail sales complemented the performance of Brazil's economy, whose official figures will be released by IBGE on Feb. 28. The financial markets estimate that it is 1.25 percent.

If the forecast holds, it will be the second year of growth for Brazil's economy, which in 2017 grew by 1 percent and ended two consecutive years of contraction.

For this largest economy in Latin America, the economic growth rate will be 2.5 percent in 2019, according to the forecasts by the financial markets.

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