Retail trade under pressure from financial crisis

Figures from the retail trade show a dramatic drop in turnover and a rise in the number of bankruptcies in the first half of 2012, particularly in non-food outlets, according to ABN Amro economists.

The retail trade has been struggling since the beginning of the financial crisis in 2008, but the figures show a worsening of the situation, say the economists.
Turnover fell 6% between January and June, compared with a 1.4% drop in the first half of 2011. The number of bankruptcies rose to 0.83%, three-quarters of them in the non-food sector.
The trend is continuing, says ABN Amro, despite positive turnover figures in September when shoppers were keen to beat the October rise in value-added tax (btw).
Pressure is coming from government cuts, the stagnant housing market and rising unemployment. Shops are also facing increased competition from online stores.
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