It's that time of year when our big retailers release their Christmas trading figures and how well or not they may have done. Catalogue firm Argos has come up trumps: its owners Home RetailGroup says sales in the 18 weeks in the run up to January 5th were £1.74 BILLION, an increase of 2.7% on last year. Meaning their pre-tax profit for the whole year could be around £10million MORE than what the market is predicting. That's despite a dip in pre-Xmas sales for its DIY arm, Homebase. People of course concentrating on Christmas shopping instead of do-it-yourself jobs at home!

The owners of Currys and PC World had a bumper festive period too. With sales up 8% in the 12 weeks up to Jan 5th, all due to quote 'phenominal' sales of iPads and other tablets.

Off the back of recent news that big High Street names HMV and Blockbuster are on the rocks too. Mothercare says it had a pretty rough pre-Christmas time with a 7.4% dip in sales compared to the same period last year.