Montenegro's retail sales grew a real 14.5% y/y in December 2013, quickening from a 12.5% y/y rise the month before, the statistics office said. The reading likely reflects strong seasonal consumption prior and during the end-of-year festivities.
In monthly terms, retail sales swung to a 10.6% increase in December from an 11.0% m/m drop in November.
Overall, the average monthly growth of retail sales in 2013 was 9.4%, up from 5.3% a year ago, partly due to stronger tourism activity. Nonetheless, it remains below the 2011 monthly average of nearly 21.0%.
Weak private consumption, as the unemployment rate hit nearly 15% in early December, will remain a drag on the recovery going forward.
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