PARIS, Jan 19 (Reuters) - Carrefour, the world's second-largest retailer, said sales growth slowed in the fourth quarter, reflecting a weaker performance in its core French market where hypermarket stores still lagged amid a persistently difficult environment.
In Brazil, the group's second-largest market after France, business was resilient despite a slowing economy.
However in China, where Carrefour is restructuring its operations, the rate of decline in sales slowed to 5.4 percent from 7.8 percent in the third quarter.
Carrefour finance chief Pierre-Jean Sivignon said 2016 recurring operating income would be "very close" to median expectations of 2.39 billion euros.
Europe's largest retailer said fourth quarter sales reached 23.366 billion euros ($24.85 billion), above the median of analysts estimates of 23.22 billion in a Thomson Reuters poll.
Stripping out fuel, currency and calendar effects, revenue grew 2.9 percent year-on-year, a slowdown from 3.2 percent growth in the third quarter.
Carrefour sales were available on the company's website.
$1 = 0.9403 euros Reporting by Dominique Vidalon; Editing by Sudip Kar-Gupta