Smaller stores in Palma launched their New Year sales this morning, earlier than their bigger rivals, in an effort to cash in on the lucrative Three Kings bonanza.

The larger retailers and department stores are not expected to launch their sales until this Saturday....but the smaller traders decided to slash their prices from today. Discounts of being 10 and 15 percent are being offered on a number of articles but there are savings of up to 50 percent.

The sales period was at one stage heavily regulated with shops unable to reduce their prices outside government regulated periods but times are harder on the high street and retailers have taken note.