With the Christmas retail period starting, store owners are hoping that they will be able to cover much of the ground lost throughout the year in December. Clothing and shoe retailers have seen turnover drop by up to 40 percent since the start of 2010, as the recession weighs heavily on private sector consumption. Several retailers have already launched promotional campaigns, ahead of the winter sales that normally start in the middle of January. The Athens Heart shopping mall winds up a three-day sales period today, during which prices were cut by up to 50 percent. The shopping mall’s management said that there was a 15 percent increase in the number of shoppers drawn by the lower prices. Retailer Notos Galleries also attracted consumers yesterday by cutting prices by 30 percent. More special offers are being offered by other retailers including Vardas.