SMALL to medium-sized retail businesses in the Balearics registered a year-on-year downturn in trade of 7.3 percent during October this year with unemployment figures in the sector rising by 3.2 percent.

A report issued by the National Institute of Statistics (INE) yesterday confirmed that at a national level, retail sales fell by 6.9 percent and unemployment in the sector rose by 1.4 percent.

Making a different comparison, sales also slid by 1 percent in respect of January (in terms of accumulated figures), while employment declined by 1.3 percent in the first ten months of the year and by 2.7 percent in comparison with the previous month of September.

Looking at other regions of the country, employment figures in the retail sector only rose in Asturias (0.9 percent), Navarre (0.5%), Galicia (0.3%) and the Basque Country (0.1%). Cantabria and the Balearics, with downturns of 3.3 and 3.2 percent respectively, were top of the country's list for job losses in the retail sector in October.