Consumer spending down again in April, say retailers

Confcommercio index falls 3.9%, 17th drop in 20 months

Consumer spending down again in April, say retailers

Rome, June 6 - Consumer spending in recession-hit Italy fell 3.9% in April with respect to the same month in 2012 for the 17th year-on-year drop in the last 20 months, retailers association Confcommercio said Thursday. The association added that consumer spending was down 0.1% in April compared to March and that it dropped 4.4% in the first third of this year with respect to the first four months of 2012. It pointed out that this is alarming as the figure for the first third of 2012 was already 3.3% down on the same period in 2011. "The deterioration of households' employment and income conditions is causing demand dynamics that are even more negative in this first part of 2013 than they were in the first few months of 2012," read a report by the association. Confcommercio said it was particularly worried about the fall in spending on telecommunications goods and services, which was down 2.5% in April with respect to March and 0.1% with respect to April 2012. Spending in this sector had frequently bucked the negative trend in recent months and managed to rise.

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