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UK online spending boom expected

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Britain's about to go on a festive spending spree that will make this year an online Christmas to remember. According to pollsters MORI, a third of Net users -- 3.6 million people -- are set to use the Net to buy Chrimbo pressies this year. Five hundred people were quizzed in the poll and reckon they'll each spend £130 online this year -- contributing to some £450 million in online sales. The most popular items destined for the Christmas stocking this year are CDs and books followed by videos and DVDs. Which is lucky really, since the research was commissioned by BlackStar, which -- you guessed it -- sells videos and DVDs online. Jeremy Glover, co-founder and director of BlackStar said: "Santa has swapped his sleigh for a surfboard this year." (Where do they dig them up? -- Ed) "This doesn't just represent a step up for Christmas cyber shopping compared to last year, it's a gigantic leap. 1999 will truly be Britain's first cyber Christmas," he said. Ho, ho, ho... Not. ®

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