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Hurricane Sandy Threatens November Retail Sales on Closings

Hurricane Sandy is threatening to reduce sales of clothing and holiday gifts during one of the most important shopping months of the year, while benefiting supermarkets and home-improvement stores such as Home Depot Inc.

Sandy may cut November same-store sales by as much as 3 percent, according to Oliver Chen, an analyst at Citigroup Inc. in New York. Traffic may fall 40 percent in affected areas in November’s first week, which accounts for about 22 percent of the month’s sales, Chen said in a note.