Turnover on the commercial market in the first three weeks of the extended summer sales period is at least 25 percent lower than last year, despite hefty discounts, the National Confederation of Greek Trade (ESEE) said .
Deeply hit by the economic crisis and deep recession, Greek shopowners were looking to the sales to generate much-needed revenues, which have dropped sharply in recent months as a result of austerity measures that have caused shoppers to restrict purchases to the bare necessities, and are offering reductions as much as 70 percent off original prices.
But turnover nearly midway through the sales period is down an average 25 percent over last summer's already low figures.

ESEE said this was the biggest slump in the last three years, with eight out of 10 merchants citing turnover declines of up to 60 percent, and only two out of 10 citing turnover levels equal to last year's.