Record Christmas shopping trade predicted
The Christmas holiday shopping season will again set a new record this year with the retailers' organisation, HUI research, predicting that Swedes will spend 66 billion SEK in December, a 1.5 percent increase on 2011.
The annual Christmas shopping forecast by the Swedish Retail Industry Research Institute says today that the sports and leisure branches will outperform other sectors but it all depends on the weather - with heavy snow a deterrent to high street shopping.
Low interest rates and inflation combined with rising wages and a strong dollar means that Swedes, according to HUI are feeling affluent and ready to treat their loved ones.
"We are cautiously optimistic and expect a sales growth in Christmas sales," writes Jonas Arnberg, senior consultant at HUI Research.
More and more Swedes are buying their goods online. During the second quarter of 2012, e-commerce increased by 13 percent, a rate that HUI estimates will continue into Christmas.
Earlier this week figures showed that retail sales have picked up again after a few years in the doldrums. Statistics Sweden's September figures showed that sales volume increased by 4.6 percent this year compared with the same period last year.
The past 16 consecutive years have seen Christmas shopping records broken. Not since December 1995, when trade fell by 3 percent, has retail trade fallen during Christmas.