New York (AP) The nation's economic slowdown may be dragging down brick-and-mortar stores, but it's full speed ahead for businesses that sell online.
Internet spending is expected to rise 17 percent this year, according to an annual survey being released Tuesday.
The online arm of the national retail federation forecasts 204 billion dollars in internet sales, mostly from clothing, computers and even automobiles.
The projection is below the 21 percent increase seen the year before, but industry officials think that's because the online retail industry is maturing.
It's a different story for many traditional retailers. Higher gasoline and food costs, along with job losses and the housing slump, have dampened shoppers' spending.
Thursday, the nation's retailers are expected to report no better than flat sales growth for march.