Treasury officials are to look into the growing impact of internet sales on the economy, it was disclosed today.
Officials said they wanted to see if the official retail sales figures produced by the Office for National Statistics fully "captured" the volume of trade done online.
The move forms part of the preparations for Chancellor Gordon Brown's Pre-Budget Report on 5 December.
A Treasury spokesman said: "Clearly, internet retailing has been increasing in recent months.
"As part of the Treasury's preparations for the Pre-Budget Report we are, of course, looking at this increase as well as other aspects of consumption."
Officials stressed that they were not questioning the accuracy of the ONS's retail sales figures published each month.
The Treasury regularly looks at economic indicators to see if they need updating.Reuse content