January 24, 2017 / 5:54 PM / a year ago

UPDATE 1-Mexico's Antad sees retail sales growth slowing in 2017

(Adds latest looting figures from gasoline price hike protests)

MEXICO CITY, Jan 24 (Reuters) - Mexico’s retailer association Antad said on Tuesday it expects same store retail sales to grow 4.2 percent this year, down from 6.3 percent in 2016.

Same store sales grew 5.3 percent in December, according to the association, which includes retail chains Walmex and Soriana, in addition to other chains.

Antad also said that a total 681 stores had been sacked throughout Mexico this month after a double-digit hike in gasoline prices put into effect by the government on Jan. 1 prompted widespread protests and violence.

Much of the looting, which cost member stores over 1.9 billion pesos ($88.76 million), occurred in the central Mexican states of Mexico, Veracruz and in the capital. ($1 = 21.4070 Mexican pesos) (Reporting by Noe Torres and Roberto Aguilar; Editing by Bernard Orr)

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