A CONVENIENCE store in Co Antrim closed last night with the loss of 43 jobs.
The Costcutter shop on Point Street in Larne had been trading for just over two years.
John Murray, the managing director of parent company Linn Stores, which has been trading since 2003, said a dramatic fall in sales was to blame for the closure and that it had experienced difficulties since Asda opened a store in the town in June.
The announcement of job losses in Larne follows news that 350 posts in the Department for Social Development are to be cut.
The Department for the Environment has also said it planned to "remove" 350 jobs in the next year. However, the DSD said it hopes that the mostly administrative posts can be redeployed within the wider Civil Service next year.
A spokesman for the DSD said: "Like all other Northern Ireland departments we are facing a difficult budgetary position."
Around 45 job losses were also announced at the Derry operations of finance company HML, which services mortgage accounts, last week.