By Aimee Chanthadavong

Days before Christmas, retail industry body the Australian Retailers Association (ARA) predicted that shoppers will spend $6.97 billion during the two weeks of post-Christmas sales and Boxing Day through to early January.

Russell Zimmerman, ARA executive director, said the expected post-Christmas retail sales in each state and territory to be:

State   2010/11 projections   2009/2010
NSW   $2.23 billion              $2.15 billion         
VIC     $1.74 billion               $1.67 billion
QLD   $1.37 billion               $1.35 billion            
WA     $799 million               $783 million  
SA     $482 million                $472 million                   
TAS   $150 million                $149 million                  
ACT  $129 million                $128 million                    
NT     $71 million                  $69 million                  
Total  $6.97 billion                $6.77 billion        

Looking at the predictions, Zimmerman told Retailbiz the results are so far so good.

“The $6.97 billion prediction is for sales ongoing until mid-January but for now, the sales started off well. On Boxing Day there were lots of people in the shop and that’s a good sign and if retail sales continue moving on that track then it’d be perfect,” he said.

However, Zimmerman noted that while these sales are going strong the reality is that retailers, such as Rebel Sport and the Colorado Group, are still seeing it tough.

“There has been a couple of retailers that have reported their financial difficulties and it’s those retailers that show the real state of the industry. It’s still pretty tough out there.”