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Christmas shopping not as popular as Black Friday bargains

  • February 08 2021
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Christmas shopping not as popular as Black Friday bargains

By Cameron Micallef
February 08 2021

Consumers are continuing to move their Christmas spending to November, with Black Friday sales trumping December retail sales, new research has revealed.

Christmas shopping

Christmas shopping not as popular as Black Friday bargains

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  • February 08 2021
  • Share

Consumers are continuing to move their Christmas spending to November, with Black Friday sales trumping December retail sales, new research has revealed.

Christmas shopping

The latest figures from the Bureau of Statistics (ABS) showed that retail sales dropped 4.1 per cent on the month to $30.4 billion in December 2020. 

This followed a strong November, with growth of 7.1 per cent, as customers snapped up Black Friday and Cyber Monday sales and ramped up their online shopping.

However, retail spending in annual terms remains at elevated levels, having gained 9.6 per cent on the year in December 2020.

“Victoria (-6.8 per cent) led falls at the state and territory level following stronger trade in November as COVID-19 restrictions eased,” Ben James, director of quarterly economy wide surveys at the ABS, said.

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“New South Wales (-4.9 per cent) also fell as the Northern Beaches cluster impacted spending in the lead-up to Christmas,” he said.

Following strong November figures, five of the six industries fell in December, led by household goods retailing, which clocked an 8.3 per cent loss. 

Clothing, footwear and personal accessory retailing (-9.4 per cent), department stores (-12.5 per cent), food retailing (-1.7 per cent) and other retailing (-4.4 per cent) also fell in December.

Cafes, restaurants and takeaway food services (3.2 per cent) was the only industry to rise in December.

Online sales made up 9.1 per cent of total retail sales in December 2020. Online contributed 6.6 per cent in December 2019.

Overall, for the final quarter of the calendar year, Victorians emerging from lockdown were the strongest spenders, adding 12.8 per cent over the December quarter, suggesting that some shoppers were happy to splash their cash when businesses opened back up.

But the national 2.5 per cent growth figure trails off from the 6.5 per cent rise in retail volume recorded over the September quarter.

Mr James said that “without the Victorian rise, seasonally adjusted volumes would have fallen in the December quarter 2020”.

Christmas shopping not as popular as Black Friday bargains
Christmas shopping
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About the author

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Cameron is a journalist for Momentum Media's nestegg and Smart Property Investment. He enjoys giving Aussies practical financial tips and tricks to help grow their wealth and achieve financial independence. As a self-confessed finance nerd, Cameron enjoys chatting with industry experts and commentators to leverage their insights to grow your portfolio.

About the author

Cameron is a journalist for Momentum Media's nestegg and Smart Property Investment. He enjoys giving Aussies practical financial tips and tricks to help grow their wealth and achieve financial independence. As a self-confessed finance nerd, Cameron enjoys chatting with industry experts and commentators to leverage their insights to grow your portfolio.

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