TOKYO: Japan’s retail sales fell by 0.3 per cent in October from a year earlier, the first drop

in eight months, the government said, but analysts were optimistic the overall economy would still continue to recover. The decline was largely the result of a slowdown in fuel price gains and a slump in clothing sales due to unseasonably warm weather. Retail sales of fuel products rose by 6.7 per cent from a year earlier, slowing from the double-digit growth pace seen in 11 out of the past 13 months, as global crude oil prices retreated.