The growth represents a slight upturn compared to the 3.5 per cent growth in November. This year’s growth shows the strongest upsurge in Christmas spending in the last few years. Retail sales were up by 3.2 per cent between the 2006 and 2005 Christmas seasons and by only 0.9 per cent between the 2005 and 2004 seasons.
An upsurge in electronics sales helped drive Christmas spending, along with strong growth in grocery sales. Specialty retailers such as music and books also fared well. Sales at clothing retailers and department stores continued to lag behind.