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Hungarian retail sales rise faster on clothes, drugs

Hungarian retail sales growth accelerated in August from the month before, as spending increased on clothing and medicine.

Retail sales rose 0.6% in the month and 5.1% from the same period a year ago, the Budapest-based statistics office said in an e-mailed statement today. The figures compare with an annual rate of 4% and a monthly increase of 0.3% in July. Prime Minister Ferenc Gyurcsány's government expects consumer spending to slow as it raises taxes and cuts subsidies to trim the European Union's widest budget deficit. The measures will increase the price of natural gas, electricity, drugs and public transport. In August, sales of clothing products rose 13.4% from the year-earlier period, medical product sales increased 12.8% from August 2005. (Bloomberg)