Retail Discounts To Lure Last-Minute Hordes

Thursday, 21 Dec 2006 | 3:50 PM ET

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.

Last Minute Retail
Procrastinators and bad weather are threatening to hinder holiday retail sales. Candace Corlett, WSL Strategic Retail Principal; Brian Nagel, UBS Retail Analyst; and CNBC's Bill Griffeth discuss whether this holiday season will be a winner or loser for retailers.

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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