ECONOMY

Dip in Easter retail sales picks up, say traders

The drop in retail spending during the Easter period picked up from last year, dipping by an average of 15 percent, versus a seven percent dip last year, with the clothing and footwear sector hardest hit, according to National Confederation of Hellenic Commerce (ESEE).

?Rising unemployment and a reduction in gross salaries …have created an unprecedented weakening of buying power for households,? ESEE said in a statement on Tuesday.

Shoppers cut back on spending on shoes and clothes by 25 percent this year, versus an 11 percent drop in 2010, according to ESEE, which said that turnover on food items dipped by eleven percent, versus 5.5 percent in 2010.

?The only bright spot we can see is that the cost of the Easter feast this year was four to five percent cheaper than last year and that more domestically produced goods were consumed,? ESEE added.