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E-Commerce Better, Bigger In 2012

E-commerce in the United States completed a comeback last year, attaining growth rates that approached pre-recession figures and posting its first over $50 billion quarter ever, according to market researcher comScore. After 17% growth in the first quarter and 15% in each of the next two, e-commerce advanced by 14% in the fourth quarter of 2012 to a total of $56.78 billion.

Although growth rates peaked in 2007, topping 20% at times, cash sales were far lower than recorded in 2012, with the fourth quarter leading at $39.13 billion.

For the full year, U.S. retail e-commerce sales reached $186.2 billion, an increase of 15%, the strongest annual growth rate since before the recession, comScore noted. The final frame of 2012 also represented the 13th consecutive quarter of positive year-over-year growth and ninth consecutive quarter of double-digit growth.