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Shopkeepers worry about Christmas profits
Photo: DPA

Shopkeepers worry about Christmas profits

Published: 19 Sep 2012 07:24 GMT+02:00
Updated: 19 Sep 2012 07:24 GMT+02:00

It may still be 30 degrees Celsius in parts of Germany, but that hasn't stopped shopkeepers from worrying about their holiday sales.

Fears are growing in the German retail industry that economic concerns and high energy prices could reduce the buying power of the German shoppers.

"The mood in the German retail market has cooled off," said the German Trade Association (HDE) Managing Director Stefan Genth, summing up the results of the association's survey of 1,300 shopkeepers.

It is not just the uncertainty over the euro crisis that's got the retail industry worried, he added. The rising energy prices also a big concern to the industry.

The high cost of electricity, heating oil and gasoline limit the purchasing budget of the buyer while creating creating higher operating costs for shops and negatively affecting the retail industry's bottom line.

And because competition is tough, many companies aren't able to fully pass on the increased costs to their customers, said Genth. Almost half of the companies interviewed for the survey complained about reduced profits in the first half of the year.

But the association's mood may be worse than the actual situation.

"The economic concerns seem to be currently larger than the actual economic risks," said Genth, adding that the country's low unemployment was a good basis for flourishing business in the coming months.

The German Trade Association anticipates a strong holiday shopping season, despite the economic downturn, he said.

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Your comments about this article

08:54 September 19, 2012 by Berlin fuer alles
In the name of austerity and preserving the Euro for big business I declare Christmas cancelled. Ooops. can't have that either that would also affect the wealthy businesses. What to do then? Maybe we should all pay more and borrow more and keep spending what we ain't got. But wouldn't that lead to another banking crisis? One giant merry-go-round. As much as the top 1% might hate the idea, they are in this with the rest of us and need to pay more themselves so as we can have more to spend more. Greedy pigs.
02:42 September 20, 2012 by BorninDachau
I find it amazing that the 1% nonsense has also spread to Germany. The takers, the envious, the flat out lazy also want to blame someone else for their shortcomings. They want on the so called "Giant merry-go-round" but, only if someone else pays for their ticket.
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