In the papers today…
Booming online sales were the difference between growth and contraction for stores this Christmas. A renewed spurt of internet spending saved shopkeepers from a decline in sales at their most important time of year, according to the British Retail Consortium. It was the first time that online spending has made the difference between sales rising and falling.
The Times, p.31
Elsewhere, the Christmas spend has been described as disappointing, with retailers only managing to eke out a small rise in sales in stores over Christmas, with total growth for December failing to match inflation.
The Independent, p.44-45
Stay-at-home mothers are being discriminated against by ministers who plan to give working women tax breaks to help pay for child care at the same time as taking away child benefit from middle-class families, MPs and campaigners warned yesterday. David Cameron and Nick Clegg are being urged to bring forward proposals to help mothers who choose not to work after yesterday’s child benefit cut for 1.1 million families.
The Daily Telegraph, p.1
House prices rose by an average of 1.3% in December, but are still likely to end this year at levels close to where they began, according to research from Halifax. The average house price in December was £163,845, up for the first time in seven months amid signs of a firming in the housing market towards the end of 2012.
The Guardian, p.22
The scale of the City’s demise has been laid bare by figures that show the number of front-line workers in the banking industry has fallen to an eight-year low. Analysis of the Financial Services Authority database by corporate finance boutique IMAS shows nearly 20,000 fewer people employed in front-line jobs by banks since the financial crisis, from a peak of about 170,000 in mid-2007.
The Daily Telegraph, p.B1