Tas Boxing Day sales fail to match nation

Big crowds of bargain hunters may have packed the Hobart CBD on Boxing Day and spent a collective $20 million but it still won't match the rest of the nation.

The Australian Retailers Association (ARA) estimates Tasmanians spent about $20 million on Boxing Day alone and a total of $280 million in the post-Christmas period.

However, sales were down 5.7 per cent from last year, which makes Tasmania the only state to record a decline in 2012.

The ARA's Tasmania spokesman, Robert Parker, said the figures were still pleasing, despite the drop in sales from last year.

"It was OK, it wasn't disastrous, and probably in line with retail sales, so it wasn't bad.

"We did have big crowds, queues outside the department stores. Hobart was buzzing with tourists and families, and we also noticed younger people spending their Christmas cash."

Mr Parker said Tasmania's retail industry has been struggling.

"There are a lot of things affecting retail, from job losses in the forestry industry, to political uncertainty and a lack of consumer sentiment," he told AAP on Thursday.

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