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Fast Cash 'Needs' Spur Early Filing of Tax Returns

In a rush to file your taxes?

Anxious to get their hands on cold, hard cash, many Americans who are expecting a refund are filing their taxes early, according to a recent survey.

Tax Refund Check
AP
Tax Refund Check

Of those expecting a tax refund, 71 percent will have filed their taxes by the end of this month, compared with 37.5 percent of people who are not expecting a refund.

Those who are expecting a check from Uncle Sam also are more likely to file their taxes online than those who don't.

The survey, which was conducted by BIGresearch on behalf of the National Retail Federation, also found that 68.4 percent of consumers expect a refund from their 2008 taxes.

Many families, eagerly anticipating extra cash, are filing taxes earlier this year,” said NRF President and CEO Tracy Mullin. “Retailers planning to offer special promotions during tax season may want to consider rolling them out as soon as possible.”

Still, retailers might not get much of a payday from from tax refund checks this year. The majority, some 48 percent, of consumers are planning on using the money to pay down debt. About 38.9 percent will squirrel the money away in savings.

Only 11 percent plan on investing in a major purchase like a television or car, and one-fourth will use it for everyday expenses.

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Questions? Comments? Email us at consumernation@cnbc.com

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