Galeries Lafayette Department Store Sales Rise 3% in December

Galeries Lafayette SA, a French department-store operator, said sales rose about 3 percent in December compared with the same month in 2010 amid concerns that the country is entering a recession.

All 62 stores in France registered growth, Virginie David, a spokeswoman for Paris-based company, said by e-mail today. She declined to provide full-year figures for 2011, saying it was too early to do so, or an outlook for 2012. “Last year was already a record in term of sales,” she said, without elaborating. Revenue was 2.86 billion euros ($3.7 billion) in 2010, according to the company’s website.

French consumer confidence held near its lowest in almost three years in December as the public remained concerned about unemployment and said financial conditions were worsening, national statistics office Insee reported today. The country’s shoppers were predicted by Deloitte LLP to increase holiday spending by only 1.9 percent because of the region’s sovereign debt crisis.

A mild winter in France weighed on demand for coats and sweaters, David said. Galeries Lafayette will cut prices between 30 percent and 60 percent on some items, the same level as last year, during the Jan. 11 to Feb. 14 sales period, David said.

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