John Lewis post-Xmas sales had record day

Shoppers enter a John Lewis store in London September 16, 2010. REUTERS/Stefan Wermuth

LONDON (Reuters) - Retailer John Lewis JLP.UL said on Tuesday it had registered a record day of sales for a single day's trade earlier this week, as many retailers brace for a tough 2011.

“Sales yesterday (December 27) reached a new high, with 12 of our branches achieving stunning record numbers and our website operation showing near double the transactions compared with the same day last year,” director Lesley Ballantyne said in a statement.

Ballantyne said there had been strong sales of TVs, audio and large electrical goods products, along with clothing and other fashion items.

John Lewis is due to report more detailed turnover figures on December 30. On Sunday, it had said that sales in the week to Christmas Day had risen by 30.6 percent compared with the same period last year.

On Monday, the organisation representing London’s upmarket West End shopping district said that more than a million shoppers had spent about 120 million pounds over the past two days in the area.

Yet despite the typically frenetic activity on Britain’s shopping streets as customers look to pick up bargains after Christmas, many retailers are braced for tougher conditions in 2011.

The British Retail Consortium (BRC) said in a survey on Monday that most retailers expected lower sales in 2011 on the back of weak consumer demand and inflationary pressures.

In the United States, a major snowstorm on the U.S. East Coast kept many shoppers home just after Christmas, casting a pall on the final act of the holiday sales season.

Reporting by Sudip Kar-Gupta; Editing by Erica Billingham