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Palma.— The figures emerged yesterday as part of the monthly small to medium-sized business report produced by trade association Pimeco for May this year. In it, 39 percent of interviewees, said, by way of contrast that their income had been worse than a year ago, a larger number than the 34 percent who said trade had been better or the 27 percent who insisted sales had been the same as in May 2010.

When the comparison is made between April and May this year, 54 percent of those taking part in the survey said that trade had improved slightly between one month and the next, 33 percent believed that business had been the same and a much lower figure of 13 percent maintained that the trade in May had been worse than in April.

According to areas of the island, 44 percent of shopkeepers in Palma said that sales had been better but in the outlying areas this figure rose to 63 percent.

According to Pimeco, the overall assessment of commercial activity in May - including an analysis of sales in relation to the number of clients - underwent a meagre upturn of 3 decimal points above the average for the last 12 months. Although the improvement is hardly appreciable, it is the best result that small to medium-sized traders have returned since the beginning of the year.