Food sales showed stronger growth than non-food, which remained down on a year ago, though by less than in December.
Online non-food sales in January were 19.2 percent higher than in January 2008. This was weaker than the 30.0 percent gain in December, when people increasingly used the Internet for their Christmas shopping.
"These surprisingly good figures give some room for optimism," says Stephen Robertson, British Retail Consortium director general. "Overall sales growth turned positive and is higher than it's been since last May. Non-food sales fell more slowly, suggesting January clearance deals released pent-up demand and customers started to spend on goods they've been intending to buy for months."
Robertson warned however, that job
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