REFILE-H&M comparable sales down 2 pct in December

Tue Jan 15, 2013 4:12am EST

(Corrects dateline to Jan 15 from Jan 14)

STOCKHOLM Jan 15 (Reuters) - Hennes & Mauritz, the world's second-biggest fashion retailer, posted on Tuesday a smaller-than expected 2 percent drop in December sales at stores open a year or more.

The mean forecast in a Reuters poll of analysts had been for a 4 percent like-for-like sales drop.

Total sales in December, the first month of the Swedish budget apparel firm's fiscal year, were up 8 percent from a year earlier in local currencies, beating a forecast for a 5 percent increase.

(Reporting by Anna Ringstrom)

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