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12 million Brits due to hit shops for 'Panic Saturday'

The busiest day in the Christmas shopping calendar is expected as shops kick off their January sales early.

On the final Saturday before Christmas, also known as "Panic Saturday", high streets will be bustling as many retailers slash their prices for last-minute bargain hunters, experts have predicted.

Retailers including River Island, H&M, Sports Direct, Argos, Sainsbury's are already offering huge seasonal discounts - with many more sales due to kick off early instead of after Christmas.

Those still searching for the perfect Christmas gift will be pleased to know discounts are expected to average 45% on what some see as the most stressful shopping day of the year, according to Deloitte.

A mild autumn and unexpectedly low Black Friday sales have left businesses desperate to shift a build up of stock, industry experts said.

Around 12.6 million Britons are expected to hit the sales in search of cut-price buys, according to and the Centre for Retail Research.

And thanks to Christmas falling on a Friday this year, "Panic Saturday" is expected to kick off a £6 billion six-day spending spree - 23% more than the same period last year when Christmas Day fell on the Thursday.

Jason Gordon, consumer business partner at Deloitte, said: "Compared to 2014, there is already a noticeable increase in both the volume and value of discounts in the run-up to Christmas this year.

"Whilst this is good news for consumers looking to grab a bargain, it is a clear sign that retailers are being faced with what is now an annual uphill battle."

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