ECONOMY

Shops resort to Christmas offers

The disappointing retail turnover in the days before Christmas has forced the Athens Tradesmen Association to call a five-day period of Christmas offers for this week.

The association is calling on customers to make the most of low prices at retail stores through Saturday as part of the celebration events organized by the City of Athens.

All signs point to a dip in turnover over the festive season that amounts to some 4 billion euros compared to last year, which led many companies to start advertising selected offers from early December that reach up to discounts of 40 percent on apparel merchandise.

This final week of 2011 constitutes the last chance retailers have to recover some of the year?s losses, but it now appears certain that the special offers will continue into the new year and up to to the official start of the winter sales in mid-January.

Notably, the drop in turnover this Christmas period has even had a serious impact on food and drink sales, which have dipped by 15 percent from 2010.