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Retail shops in France reel from after shock of Paris attacks

A security guard patrols near the Printemps department store in a shopping district in Paris, France, November 23, 2015 a week after a series of deadly attacks in the French capital
A security guard patrols near the Printemps department store in a shopping district in Paris, France, November 23, 2015 a week after a series of deadly attacks in the French capital REUTERS/Eric Gaillard/Files

New data published on Thursday reveals that business activity slumped in November following the Friday 13 attacks. Sweeping security measures across the Paris region, including at department stores, airports and other public venues, have deterred shoppers. Meanwhile in the tourism industry, sales are equally down.

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The elevated security threat in France following the deadly Paris attacks, has impacted growth within the private sector.

According to financial data compiled by company Markit, France's final Purchasing Managers' Index (PMI) fell by some 2 points to 51 from 52.6 in October.

"Some companies mentioned the impact of the November 13 attacks", the report revealed.

Initial estimates had suggested an increase of 51.3.

Markit-- which measures growth perceptions in the industry-- said this was the slowest increase since August.

For the eurozone as a whole, the final PMI index showed a level of 54.2, up from October's 54.1.

It came in below an initial flash estimate of 54.6, but still showed a three-month high, with growth "remaining among the fastest registered during the past four-and-a-half years", Markit said.

"With the exception of France, growth rates are moving higher, but the ECB's concerns over price stability are given further credence by the survey showing average prices charged for goods and services dropping for a second successive month," Markit chief economist Chris Williamson noted in the report.

The European Central Bank's governing council is meeting on Thursday amid expectations of further quantitative easing, possibly combined with a cut in leading interest rates.

Meanwhile, in France's tourism industry, security concerns have also impacted sales. Tourist operators and hotel staff are experiencing a lower turn-out with the heightened terror threat. Many hope that the government's tough security response will be enough to reassure would-be tourists.

With AFP

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