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Holiday Season Online Spending Outpacing Forecast

Holiday Season Online Spending Outpacing Forecast

comScore (NASDAQ : SCOR), a leader in measuring the digital world, today reported holiday season retail e-commerce spending for the first 43 days of the November - December 2009 holiday season.

For the holiday season-to-date, nearly $21 billion has been spent online, marking a 4-percent increase versus the corresponding days last year.

The most recent week ending December 13 reached $4.74 billion in spending, ranking as the heaviest online spending week on record. The previous high of $4.70 billion occurred during the week ending December 16, 2007.

"This most recent week began with five consecutive strong online spending days surpassing $700 million, followed by a fairly upbeat weekend," said comScore chairman Gian Fulgoni.

"Six weeks into the online holiday shopping season and with a cumulative growth rate of 4-percent, we are tracking slightly above our forecast of a 3-percent growth rate versus year ago, which appears to be partially attributable to continued heavy promotional activity among retailers.

Though early reports indicated that retailers had pulled back on inventory this season and would not be discounting as heavily late into the season, data from Shoplocal.com show that online retailer promotion activity is continuing at a high rate with the number of offers in the last week up 21 percent versus year ago."

Will Green Monday be the Heaviest Online Spending Day of 2009?

For years there has been a misconception that Cyber Monday is the heaviest online spending day of the year.

In actuality, Cyber Monday represents the first significant uptick in online holiday spending, while heavier spending continues to build until mid-December.

In 2007, eBay and PayPal suggested that online spending actually peaks on the second Monday in December, and dubbed this event "Green Monday." Monday tends to be the heaviest online spending day of the week, because holiday spending is still heavily dependent on work-based online shopping and because people tend to be in the office longer hours on Mondays.

This year, "Green Monday" occurred on Monday, December 14 and is likely to be the heaviest online spending day of the year and perhaps of all-time. comScore will announce this year’s Green Monday total later in the week.

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