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The Office for National Statistics released the retail sales data for the U.K. on Fridday. Retail sales in the U.K. increased 0.4% in December, exceeding expectations for a 0.6% drop, after a 1.6% gain in November.
The increase was driven by lower petrol prices and higher demand in food.
On a yearly basis, retail sales in the U.K. climbed 4.3% in December, beating expectations for a 3.0% rise, after a 6.4% increase in November.
Sales at department stores dropped 4.5% in December, the weakest performance since January 1996.
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