Holiday e-commerce season sales up for early December

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Online sales for the first five days of December were up 9% over last year - $3.74 billion from $3.41 billion, ComScore reported.

Overall, for the holiday season starting November 1 through December 5, $14.92 billion has been spent online, relatively flat over last year's $14.90 billion for the same time period, according to ComScore. The boost in the first days of December appears largely to have come from Cyber Monday, with sales reaching $846 million, and December 2, with sales of $823 million. 

“The online holiday shopping season has picked up noticeably since Thanksgiving as consumers have given in to the holiday spirit – and very attractive retailer discounts,” said comScore chairman Gian Fulgoni in a statement. “Particularly encouraging is the growth of 9 percent in online sales that has occurred since Cyber Monday. While this growth is certainly a positive development in this tough retail season, it also needs to be put into perspective. With the compressed time period between Thanksgiving and Christmas this year – five days shorter than last year – we need to see continued strong growth during the critical weeks between today and Christmas if this year's shopping season is to at least match that of last year.”

The fastest growing product categories during the December 1-5 period were sports and fitness (up 35%) and consumer electronics (up 24%), ComScore reported. The softest retail categories include music, movies and videos (down 24%) and jewelry and watches (down 22%).

ComScore also reported that during the five-day period since Cyber Monday, traffic to the retail site category is up 2 percent versus last year. 

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