3. Selling expenses

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€ million

12M 2012

9M 2012

9M 2013

Personnel expenses

5,924

4,398

4,375

Cost of material

6,469

4,700

4,511

 

12,393

9,098

8,886

The decline in selling expenses compared with the previous year is largely due to depreciation shown under cost of material. This decline is due to the impairment losses recognised in connection with the disposal of the cash & carry business in the United Kingdom during the previous year’s period as well as scheduled depreciation applying to this operation during the short financial year. In addition, the decisions to end the Chinese business operations of the Media Markt sales brand and to dispose of Real’s Eastern European business and the associated reclassification of Real’s Eastern European business to “assets held for sale” as of 31 December 2012 resulted in the elimination of scheduled depreciation for these business operations during the short financial year.