John Lewis Store Sales Rise 4.5 Percent In Christmas Week

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LONDON, Jan 2 (Reuters) - Britain's John Lewis said sales in its department stores rose 4.5 percent in the week ending December 29, boosted by strong demand on Christmas Eve and "a confident start to post-Christmas clearance both online and in shops".

The employee-owned retailer said sales at its Waitrose supermarket chain rose 19.2 percent in the same week, although the figure was heavily distorted by the fall of Christmas and new year.

Sales the prior week were down 11.7 percent. (Reporting by Paul Sandle)