FRIDAY, JAN. 20: The volume of retail sales was down for the 43rd straight month in November 2011 as car sales were down 51.6 per cent.

The Department of Statistics consumers spent $81.5 million on goods and services in the retail sector, marking a decline of 2.7 per cent from November of 2010.

The volume of retail sales fell by 5.4 per cent on year.

Overseas spending by residents was down 25.3 per cent, declaring $5.9 million in goods compared to $7.9 million in 2010.

It was also the first month residents had to pay 35 per cent duty at the airport for goods purchased overseas.

Building material stores showed an increase of 10 per cent in November 2011.

The motor vehicle sector continues to be hard hit with gross receipts down 38.8 per cent. Car sales fell 51.6 per cent while motorcycle sales declined 7.7 per cent.

An 11 per cent rise in the price of gas saw revenue within the service stations sector rise just 2.7 per cent.

Apparel sales were down 7.1 per cent.

Sales at tourist-related stores were down 4.6 per cent while boat and marine supply stores decreasing by 24.1 per cent.

Sales of pharmaceuticals increased by 1.7 per cent.