Palma.—The Balearics' two main retail associations yesterday reported that the Winter sales, which end this week, did not live up to expectations.
The Presidents of Pimeco and Afedeco, Bernat Coll and Bartomeu Servera respectively, said that after having consulted the vast majority of their members, the bulk of retailers claim that takings were either the same or down on last year.

Brisk start
Both agreed that the Winter sales got off to a brisk start. “The first few days were extremely encouraging, takings outstripped last year by a long way, but the excitement did not last for long and trading slowly began to tail off,” Coll said. “At one point, it looked like business was going to be way down on last year,” Servera added.

However, while one of the coldest Februarys on record was not everybody's cup of tea, it warmed the hearts of the retail sector. “The cold snap certainly had a marked affect on takings, it sparked a significant surge in demand for winter clothes, for example,” Servera said. “And, thanks to the cold snap, takings could for the most part match last year's, although that is not going to be the case for everyone,” he added. “In view of the current economic situation, consumer confidence is very weak and people are worried about the future on the back of the government's series of cuts and labour reform,” said Coll. “The balance is going to be negative, and last year's Winter sales were very poor, but what can we do, we've been in a crisis for months now and trade just continues to plummet,” he added.