Jan 18 2013
Retailers suffered a worse Christmas than previously feared after official figures showed a surprise drop in volumes in December.
The Office for National Statistics (ONS) said retail sales volumes fell 0.1% between November and December, after economists predicted a return to growth of 0.2%. It will fuel fears that the economy contracted at the end of last year.
There were further signs that shoppers shunned the high street with the figures showing that non-store retailing volumes grew 1.6% month-on-month, and accounted for 10.6% of all retail sales in December.