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Business

Retails Sales in Germany Unexpectedly Rise

Retail sales in Germany unexpectedly increased for a second month in July as summer sales and discounts convinced shoppers to spend more money. Sales increased 0.9 percent from June, when they rose 2.6 percent, the Federal Statistics Office in Wiesbaden said in a statement. Rising unemployment has stunted retail sales for at least two years and drove down consumer sentiment to the lowest in over a year last month. Wednesday's report suggests that efforts by companies such as Ikea, the world's biggest home-furnishings retailer, to lure customers with price cuts had some effect in July.