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Post-Christmas trading period to hit $21 billion: ARA

ARA chief executive Paul Zahra. (Source: Supplied)

The Australian Retailers’ Association is expecting Aussies’ pent-up demand for shopping to continue beyond Christmas, divining that a record $21 billion will be spent in stores and online in the period between Boxing Day and January 15.

ARA chief executive Paul Zahra said Boxing Day sales are always a key part of the retail calendar, but that that momentum will continue into the new year.

“[In] our post-Christmas sales forecast… all retail categories have recorded an increase in spending on last year, apart from food which is down slightly – not surprising given more people will be out socialising this year,” Zahra said.

“Hospitality is set to thrive as a result – up 10.7 per cent on last year’s post-Christmas period when the Covid threat was more severe and vaccines were yet to be rolled out.”

Source: ARA

Roy Morgan chief executive Michele Levine said high vaccination rates across most of the country would contribute to higher in-store spending, and that two years spent in relative isolation will have allowed many consumers to build up a savings chest – allowing retailers to target higher spending levels.

This comes after both the ARA and NRA predicted 2021’s Christmas period would bring in close to $60 billion, and urged Australians to ‘shop early, shop often’.

“A silver lining to lockdowns is that when restrictions are lifted it does result in strong consumer spending from pent up demand,” NRA boss Dominique Lamb said.

“As horrible as 2021 has been for retailers who have been in prolonged lockdown, at least they’ll be open in time to cash in on Christmas.”

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