According to The Australian newspaper (Rosie Lewis article) spending by Christmas shoppers has been ‘flat’ and will not make retailers happy. Christmas spending is only expected to end up about 2.5 to 4 percent higher than last year and last year was a really bad Christmas for retailers.
However it seems there was a boom in online sales although it mystifies me how they actually work that out.
I have to say the few times I went near any shopping centre carparks it sure seemed like there were a lot of people out there spending. My wife reported that on one visit to Carousel in Cannington about a week ago she was unable to park after trying for about half an hour.
Obviously all these people were not spending enough. They must have all been ‘window shopping’ and not actually spending.
Although as pointed out by Gerry Harvey from Harvey Norman, with margins now cut so low the retailers need to sell about 2.5 times more units (computers, TVs, tablets, whatever) to make the profits they were making prior to the GFC. And in the meantime wages and operating costs (power, rent, insurance, etc.,) continue to go up.