Interest rates, rising utility bills and even the weather have been blamed for sluggish Christmas sales.
Retail sales nationally are down on forecasts, and most retailers are doing worse than this time last year, reports AAP.
In Victoria the cash registers are tracking better than the national average, but only just.
Australian Retailers Association (ARA) executive director Russell Zimmerman said Victorian retailers were hoping for a last-minute shopping bonanza to ring up the $9.7 billion in Christmas sales predicted earlier in the year.
Read more here.