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Carrefour shows solid growth; LatAm, Europe gain

PARIS (AP) -- Big box retailer Carrefour is posting solid gains in 2013, as sales grew in Latin America and Asia, rebounded in Spain and France — two of its biggest markets — and a turnaround plan took hold.

Europe's largest retailer said Thursday its full-year sales were 84.3 billion euros ($114.8 billion), an increase of 2.5 percent, according to adjusted figures accounting for asset sales and cutting debt. In a by-the-numbers comparison with 2012, growth fell 1.2 percent.

During 2013 the company closed stores or transferred operations in faltering markets, with new CEO Georges Plassat promising to refocus in areas where it could be a leader. The company said Spain's fourth-quarter sales returned to positive territory for the first time since 2008.

France also rebounded, with full-year sales growth of 1.3 percent.