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Australians expected to break retail spending records over post-Christmas period

Xinhua,December 27, 2017 Adjust font size:

CANBERRA, Dec. 27 (Xinhua) -- Savvy Australian shoppers are expected to break retail shopping records this post-Christmas period, as more local retailers continue to embrace the "Boxing Day sales" phenomenon.

The Australian Retail Association (ARA) has already indicated that sales on Boxing Day (Dec. 26) alone are expected to exceed the predicted figure of 2.3 billion Australian dollars (1.78 billion U.S. dollars), while the entire post-Christmas period, from Dec. 26 to Jan. 15, spenditure is expected to exceed 17.8 billion Australian dollars (13.76 billion U.S. dollars).

According to ARA executive director Russell Zimmerman, record spending is likely to occur due to a number of reasons, including the rise in online retail spending, the lack of "dirt cheap" sale products, and the fact that more Australian retailers continue to offer Boxing Day sales.

Speaking to Australian Broadcasting Corporation (ABC) radio on Wednesday, Zimmerman said while the sales were becoming more popular with consumers, there were fewer "red ticket" sale items, meaning overall spending was increasing.

"What has gone away from Boxing Day and what is something that was of concern many years ago was that we had massive 'come on' items that retailers were virtually giving away (in order to get people into their stores)," Zimmerman said.

"There was a crush (with consumers) who were trying to get a hold of those few (very cheap) products.

"That's most definitely illegal now and it's certainly stopped now; we don't see any of that 'bait advertising' we used to."

Zimmerman added that while consumers in eastern states were well accustomed to the Boxing Day sales, there were some states, like South Australia, which were yet to fully embrace the notion. When South Australia jumps on the bandwagon, retail forecasts would continue to rise.

"We are hearing of people who take the time to fly out of Adelaide and head to Melbourne... which is good for Melbourne, but a loss of income for Adelaide," he said.

Final figures from the post-Christmas retail spend won't be known for around two months, Zimmerman said. Enditem