Retailers jump-start holiday season deals
Retailers are wasting no time this holiday season showcasing great deals, long before Black Friday.
Walmart.com offered a 42-inch JVC TV for $300 on Nov. 1. Banana Republic and Pottery Barn discounted virtually their entire non-clearance inventory 15 to 40 percent in October. And last week Target offered an unprecedented $200 credit on any used, functioning iPad with a new iPad purchase.
The early bargains are partly a reflection of the uncertain economy, as well as a compressed shopping season between this year's late Thanksgiving and Christmas. But they also show how retailers are working harder to get shoppers' attention in an age of intensifying online competition.
“Every year the promotions start earlier and get more sensational,” said Sean Naughton, an analyst for Piper Jaffray in Minneapolis.
Some attribute the early specials to consumer sentiment sliding in October to its lowest since the end of last year, according to a University of Michigan survey.
Others point to reasons other than economics. Americans are procrastinating less, according to the National Retail Federation. About 22 percent of U.S. consumers say they start their holiday shopping in October, and the number who expect to finish their shopping in November is 5 percentage points higher than last year.
TribLive commenting policy
You are solely responsible for your comments and by using TribLive.com you agree to our Terms of Service.
We moderate comments. Our goal is to provide substantive commentary for a general readership. By screening submissions, we provide a space where readers can share intelligent and informed commentary that enhances the quality of our news and information.
While most comments will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive, moderating decisions are subjective. We will make them as carefully and consistently as we can. Because of the volume of reader comments, we cannot review individual moderation decisions with readers.
We value thoughtful comments representing a range of views that make their point quickly and politely. We make an effort to protect discussions from repeated comments â either by the same reader or different readers.
We follow the same standards for taste as the daily newspaper. A few things we won't tolerate: personal attacks, obscenity, vulgarity, profanity (including expletives and letters followed by dashes), commercial promotion, impersonations, incoherence, proselytizing and SHOUTING. Don't include URLs to Web sites.
We do not edit comments. They are either approved or deleted. We reserve the right to edit a comment that is quoted or excerpted in an article. In this case, we may fix spelling and punctuation.
We welcome strong opinions and criticism of our work, but we don't want comments to become bogged down with discussions of our policies and we will moderate accordingly.
We appreciate it when readers and people quoted in articles or blog posts point out errors of fact or emphasis and will investigate all assertions. But these suggestions should be sent via e-mail. To avoid distracting other readers, we won't publish comments that suggest a correction. Instead, corrections will be made in a blog post or in an article.