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MasterCard: Holiday sales better than last year

MasterCard: Holiday sales better than last year

SHOPPING: Holiday shoppers pass a nutcracker figure in the Georgetown neighborhood of Washington on Christmas Eve, Tuesday, Dec. 24. Photo: Associated Press/Jacquelyn Martin

(Reuters) – The 2013 holiday season, touted to be the worst since 2008, showed strong growth compared to last year, according to data published by MasterCard Advisors SpendingPulse, which tracks customer spending during the holiday season.

Holiday sales between Nov. 1 and Dec. 24 rose 2.3 percent, compared to 0.7 percent a year earlier.

“It was actually a Merry Christmas for retailers,” Sarah Quinlan, senior vice president at MasterCard Advisors, told Reuters, adding that jewelry was the best-performing category during the season.

(Reporting by Siddharth Cavale in Bangalore; Editing by Sriraj Kalluvila)

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