November 27, 2012 |
At this rate, soon every day of the holiday season will have a name. Thanksgiving Thursday begot Black Friday, which then begot Cyber Monday, and which nonprofits are hoping this year will now beget Giving Tuesday - a new branding effort after record-shattering holiday sales this weekend. ( NPR quoted a Twitter user who suggested rounding out the cycle with "Weeping Wednesday ... the day after you get the bill. " All of this, by the way, is happening during No-Shave November , which is presumably followed by Do-Shave December.)
November 25, 2012 |
Drawn by aggressive discounts and earlier-than-ever opening hours, shoppers opened their wallets on Black Friday weekend in record numbers and handed retailers a promising start to the holiday season. Merchants raked in an estimated $59.1 billion in sales from Thanksgiving Day through Sunday, up from $52.4 billion a year earlier, as millions flocked to stores and browsed online, according to the National Retail Federation. Spending per shopper jumped 6% to $423. The spending mania is expected to continue into so-called Cyber Monday, which is the first workday after the holiday weekend, when many indulge in online shopping in their cubicles or offices.
November 22, 2012
Re "Something to be thankful for," Nov. 20 With the holidays here, I am reminded of the way we once celebrated them. Stores were actually closed, and there wasn't a Black Friday, nor were there endless lines of people who had waited for days to buy things. People actually slowed down and took a day off to do nothing. We were not attached to any devices that now have become indispensable. I truly am grateful this holiday season for the memory of a time when the world stopped and took a real day off from all the madness and stress.
November 18, 2012 |
Here is a roundup of alleged cons, frauds and schemes to watch out for. In addition to good times with family and friends, the holiday season brings a number of potential threats for consumers. Here is some advice, provided by the Better Business Bureau. Watch your wallet - Don't become so distracted when making purchases that you leave your purse, wallet or shiny new iPhone unattended; it takes just a moment for a thief to swoop in and ruin your day. Also, do not leave your credit cards in open view for too long.
November 18, 2012 |
Get ready for a red, white and blue Christmas. With a sluggish economy, high unemployment and a just-finished presidential election laser-focused on jobs, many consumers say they are more eager than ever to buy gifts made right here in America. Shoppers don't have to rifle through stores or flip over labels this year. Many retailers are proudly touting their wares with made-in-the-USA credentials in hopes of wooing shoppers eager to show their patriotism through their pocketbooks.
November 15, 2012 |
Retail giant Wal-Mart Stores Inc. reported a jump in third-quarter profit but warned that future growth could be hampered by a shaky global economy. For the three months ended Oct. 31, the world's biggest retailer said profit was $3.63 billion, or $1.08 a share, up 9% from $3.33 billion, or 96 cents a share, in the same period a year ago. Excluding Sam's Clubs memberships, net sales climbed 3.4% to $113.2 billion. Wal-Mart said that sales at U.S. stores open at least a year, an important measure of a retailer's health because it excludes the effect of openings and closings, grew 1.5%, falling below Wall Street expectations of a 1.8% increase.
November 15, 2012 |
It's time to start taking bets on what tablet will reign supreme this holiday season. On Thursday, the folks behind CouponCodes4u.com made a bold prediction: They say the Kindle Fire HD will outsell the iPad mini by 2 to 1. To back up that claim, the coupon clearing house website cited data collected from its website that shows nearly twice as many searches for the words "Kindle Fire HD" compared with "iPad mini" in the last three weeks. ...
November 12, 2012 |
If your grim financial situation means you have to choose between flying for either Thanksgiving or the December holidays, you may get a better deal flying for Turkey Day. The national average price for a round-trip domestic flight for Thanksgiving is $420, about the same as a year ago, according to airline ticket data analyzed by the travel booking website Priceline.com. But the national average airfare for the span that includes Christmas and New Year's Eve is up 3%, to $444. If you had booked Thanksgiving reservations in early October, you would have paid an average airfare of $393, while the average December holiday airfare, if booked at that time, was $430, according to Priceline.
November 10, 2012 |
Movie theaters posted their worst attendance since 1994 last year, but Hollywood is poised for a big comeback - with the help of a secret agent, a sullen vampire and a hairy-footed hobbit. Domestic ticket sales are already up by 3% compared with the same period last year, and a bumper crop of strong films this holiday season - including movies that will appeal to both popular and discerning tastes - could push annual box office receipts above $11 billion for the first time. A strong finish to the year could ease the uncertainty gripping an industry under pressure to cut costs and boost profits, especially as revenue dwindles from once-reliable DVD sales and as more fans turn to video-on-demand and streaming to catch the latest movies.
November 9, 2012 |
Ever since Apple Inc. alumni Ron Johnson took over as chief executive of J.C. Penney Co. the department store chain has been deep in the throes of a transformation that has so far confused shoppers and depressed sales. Now its third-quarter results show continued losses that are a worrisome sign for the holiday season. For the three months ended Oct. 27, the retailer on Friday reported a loss of $123 million, or 56 cents a share, slightly better than the loss of $143 million, or 67 cents a share, in the same period a year ago. Sales plunged 27% to $2.93 billion.