THE RETAIL trade sector in Spain in June celebrated increased sales levels in comparison with the previous year.
The region of Navarra had a particularly good result with an increase of 11.3 percent as did the Canary Islands with 10.6 percent. Figures for the sector were released yesterday by the National Institute of Statistics (INE). Throughout Spain, retail trade sales grew by 6 percent in respect of the same month in 2002.
Analysing by individual regions, this growth proved to be weakest in Aragon (0.7 percent) and in Castilla-y-León (1.8 percent), as well as in the self-governing city of Ceuta in North Africa (1.3 percent). With regard to May this year, a negative growth rate was registered, since throughout the country sales fell by seven points. Twelve of Spain's regions, and the cities of Ceuta and Melilla followed this trend. The most notable falls in sales for that month were recorded in Asturias (-6.3 percent) and Ceuta (-6.6 percent) while amongst the regions which registered a rise, the Balearics was top of the list with 9.2 percent. The enquiry made by the National Institute of Statistics also offers quarterly information on the level of employment in the retail trade in respect of the period April to June 2003, the previous quarter January to March 2003, and the same period in 2002. The year on year figures show that employment figures for the sector grew in all Spain's regions, except in Melilla (-3.1 percent) and the Balearic Islands (-0.5 percent). Another perspective shows growth in employment at its greatest in Madrid (5.8 percent) and the Canary Islands (5.1 percent) but lowest in the Balearics (0.8 percent). The national average was a growth of 3.3 percent. Examining the previous quarter (January to March of 2003), employment in the retail trade sector grew in all regions except Extremadura, the Basque Country and Melilla. Regions showing the most notable quarterly rises were the Balearics (4.8 percent) and Valencia (4.2 percent).
The following table analyses across the regions of Spain, the variation in retail trade sales in the month of June, 2003 in comparison to May 2003 and to June of 2002. Similarly, employment levels in the sector in the second quarter of this year are shown, the first quarter of 2003 and the second of 2002.

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