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With Christmas accounting for up to one-fifth of annual retail trade, a Citigroup report states that consumer spend this time of year will be more important than ever.The report’s authors, senior analysts Craig Woolford and Andy Bowley, are bullish about the market, even with an economic slow down, with expected sales around Christmas to be +5 percent, stimulated by government handouts, petrol prices falling and reduced interest rates.

The report states that CE retailers like JB Hi-Fi could generate up to 25 percent of its yearly profit over this period. They also believe the standout gift category this year will be small electronics, which will be music to the ears of some retailers and vendors. They also predict that gaming consoles will be a popular gift item.

October saw almost all categories suffer with household goods’ sales falling 3.2 percent and clothing also falling, with consumers also putting a squeeze on their credit card spend.

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