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Retail Discounts To Lure Last-Minute Hordes

The early bird gets the worm – but the last-minute shopper gets the big discounts.

CNBC’s Margaret Brennan reports that major New York department stores are slashing merchandise prices in hopes of luring in procrastinators – who might have been waiting for just such enticements.

She says Saks’ flagship Fifth Avenue store is offering many items at 40% off – and that’s a second price cut on a lot of those pieces, which had already been discounted this season.

Bloomingdale’s and the legendary Macy’s – both units of Federated Department Stores – are each knocking a myriad of their items down by 50%.

Goldman Sachs retail analyst Adrianne Shapira says this weekend is one of “paramount importance": historically, two key holiday shopping days have always been Dec. 23 and the Saturday before Christmas – and this year, both points coincide.

But don’t fear a human logjam at the doors: Chris Horvers, retail analyst at Bear Stearns, believes that stores like Best Buy and Circuit City learned a logistics lesson on Black Friday, and will be prepared to receive the eager shopping hordes.

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