Despite the gloom, 2012 is off to a decent start. The Office of National Statistics revealed the value of retail sales in January 2012 showed an increase of 4.4 per cent compared with January 2011.
Sales volumes in January 2012 increased 2.0 per cent when compared with January 2011 and were driven primarily by non-store retailing and other stores.
An estimated £24.6 billion was spent in the retail sector, compared to £42.1 billion in December 2011 and £23.6 billion in January 2011.
Internet Sales estimates include sales made over the internet by all retailers including on-line sales from supermarkets, department stores, clothing stores and predominantly non-store retailers.
In January 2012 the non-seasonally adjusted average weekly sales value of Internet retail sales was estimated at £640.4 million which was approximately 11.9 per cent of all retail sales compared to £462.1 million in January 2011.