* Sales grow 0.5 pct from March (poll +1.4 pct
* Supermarket sales drop 0.6 pct on high inflation
By Silvio Cascione
SAO PAULO, June 13 Brazilian retail sales
recovered at a much slower pace than expected in April,
dampening hopes of faster economic growth in the second quarter.
Retail sales volumes in Brazil rose 0.5 percent in April
from March, up from two straight drops in the prior
months but far below expectations for an increase of 1.4
percent, statistics agency IBGE said on Thursday.
Recent lackluster consumer demand data is dimming what had
been one of the few bright spots in a sluggish Brazilian
A spike in food prices dragged supermarket sales 0.6 percent
lower, highlighting tighter family budgets despite record-low
unemployment and borrowing costs. Free-spending consumers have
helped keep Brazil out of recession in recent years amid weak
investment and industrial production.
April's retail sales rose 1.6 percent from the year-earlier
period, the IBGE added, less than the 3.5 percent
median estimate in the Reuters poll. Forecasts ranged from a
gain of 0.9 percent to 5.2 percent.
Taking into account sales of automobiles and construction
materials, the so-called broader retail sales index rose 1.9
percent from March, IBGE said.
Sales growth in March from February was revised to zero
growth, from a previously reported 0.1 percent decline.
Retail sales index 0.5 1.6
Fuel and lubricants 3.3 8.3
Supermarkets, food, beverages and -0.5 -5.4
Supermarkets -0.6 -5.6
Textiles, apparel and footwear -0.5 10.2
Furniture and household appliances 0.7 9.2
Pharmaceutical, medical, orthopedic 6.4 14.9
materials, toiletries, cosmetics
Office, computer and communication -1.1 5.1
material and equipment
Books, newspapers, magazines and 4.5 12.7
Other articles of personal and 2.5 6.9
Broad retail sales index 1.9 9.1
Vehicles and motorcycles, parts 0.4 22.4
Construction material 1.2 16.2