BBC: Online shopping over the Christmas period grew 19 times faster than overall retail sales, an industry body has told BBC News Online.

IMRG said online sales were 79% higher than a year ago, with shoppers “deluging” e-tailers with £949m worth of orders in the three available Christmas shopping weeks.

This compared with year-on-year growth on the High Street of 4.1%, according to British Retail Consortium figures.

John Lewis Direct managing director Simon Palethorpe said he thought the growth indicated increased confidence in online shopping.