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Holiday Central 2009

Features

  • Retailers 'Friend' Facebook Tuesday, 1 Dec 2009 | 3:29 PM ET

    When Staples decided on its Black Friday specials this year, it knew the deals wouldn’t stay secret for long. In the Internet age, retail surprises are quickly becoming things of the past as ads leak online weeks before their official unveiling.

  • Sorry Santa, We're Out of Stock Friday, 20 Nov 2009 | 1:58 PM ET
    Shoppers leave a store on 'Black Friday' in New York City.

    With nightmares of Christmas 2008 markdowns dancing in their heads, retailers have slashed inventories to some of the leanest levels in recent memory.

  • Happy Down-Sized Holiday Friday, 20 Nov 2009 | 1:57 PM ET

    Battered by the recession, families are scaling back their holiday plans. Here’s why that’s a good thing.

  • Everyone's A Scrooge Friday, 20 Nov 2009 | 1:56 PM ET
    Boots on sale

    With frugal being the height of fashion, consumers are being increasingly sophisticated in how they hunt for deals.

Slideshows

  • Holiday Gifts Under $10 - 2009 Thursday, 10 Dec 2009 | 8:02 AM ET
    Price wars and saavy retailers ready to compete on price mean lots of great gifts under $10. Discount retailers such as Target and Wal-Mart have battled over who has the lowest prices on toys, books and DVDs, but this year's deals extend beyond discount stores and include items in home goods, beauty, apparel and technology.“Stores and shoppers were caught off guard last year,” said Ellen Davis, vice president of the National Retail Federation. “This year, retailers really had time on their side

    Price wars and saavy retailers ready to compete on price mean lots of great gifts under $10. Here are some great gifts for men, women and kids that won’t drain your bank account.

  • The Cost of the 12 Days of Christmas Wednesday, 30 Nov 2011 | 3:21 PM ET
    How much does true love really cost? In the popular holiday song "The 12 Days of Christmas," a series of gifts are given by a "true love", but something the song won't tell you is that the cost of these gifts - from the 12 drummers drumming to a partridge in a pear tree - in reality  is quite pricey.Since 1984,  has calculated the real-world cost of the song, or what you would hypothetically pay if these gifts were bought at today's prices. , which is up 1.8% year-over-year to $21,465.56, is a m

    In the popular holiday song "The 12 Days of Christmas," a series of gifts are given by a "true love", but something the song won't tell you is that the cost of these gifts in reality is quite pricey.

  • Wines to Bring to a Holiday Meal Monday, 2 Nov 2009 | 4:05 PM ET
    Which wines to bring - or serve - with a holiday meal? It's a question that plagues many at this time of year when plans for turkey, ham and root vegetables conquer your to do list. Choosing which wine pairs well with what is being baked, roasted or frosted can compel one to reach for the boxed Franzia. No worry. We've consulted a handful of wine and food experts to do the work for us.Click ahead and read which wines experts like Royal wine advisor Jancis Robinson and Wine TV creator Gary Vayner

    See which wines experts like Royal wine advisor Jancis Robinson and Wine TV creator Gary Vaynerchuk recommend for your holiday soiree.

  • Victoria's Secret Fashion Show Friday, 20 Nov 2009 | 12:55 AM ET
    A model gets her hair and make up done before the show.

    The Victoria's Secret Fashion Show attracts a big TV audience every year as millions tune in to gawk at leggy models strutting down the runway in lingerie.

  • Hot Holiday Toys from Toys 'R Us Thursday, 24 Sep 2009 | 3:28 PM ET
    What will Santa have in his bag this holiday season? Toys ‘R Us, the largest U.S. toy retailer, has issued its forecast for the hottest toys.With consumers still watching their spending carefully, one theme that stands out  is a focus on value. Toys on the list range from $10 (squeaking Zhu Zhu interactive hamsters )  to about $350 (Disney 's Netpals netbook computer). Click ahead to see which toys made the cut. 

    What will Santa have in his bag this holiday season? Toys ‘R Us, the largest US toy retailer, has issued its forecast for the hottest toys.

  • Fantasy Christmas Gifts 2009 Friday, 9 Oct 2009 | 1:59 PM ET
    When you were young, you may have paged through toy catalogs, compiling the perfect wish list for Santa.  Even though you’re older, there’s no reason to stop dreaming. To get those fantasies churning, click ahead and take a peek at this year’s .The catalog was first published in 1926 as a 16-page booklet intended for its best customers. Each year since, it has helped set the bar for luxury holiday gifts. This year’s edition reflects more somber times and includes less pricey items. Keeping in mi

    When you were young, you may have paged through toy catalogs, compiling the perfect wish list for Santa.Even though you’re older, there’s no reason to stop dreaming.

  • 10 Video Games on Holiday Wish Lists Thursday, 12 Nov 2009 | 7:12 AM ET

    As you gear up for your holiday shopping, here are the games most likely to be on the wish lists of friends and family.

  • 10 Holiday Cocktail Recipes Friday, 20 Nov 2009 | 1:51 PM ET
    Retailers aren't the only ones with a lot at stake during the holidays. About one-third of all spirits sales are rung up during the last two months of the year, according to the industry's trade group, the Distilled Spirits Council of the United States. Although office parties are getting downsized --or eliminated-- this year, people will still gather and celebrate the holidays with family and friends. We asked some of the nation's top bartenders for their suggestions  on  what to serve at holid

    We asked some of the nation's top mixologists for their suggestions on what to serve at holiday celebrations. Here are the recipes!

  • Holiday Tipping Guide: 2009 Monday, 21 Dec 2009 | 12:57 PM ET
    Smart phones are at the top of a lot of holiday shopping lists this year, and with the number of models available, choosing the right one can be tricky. Here's a need-to-know guide to nine devices, based on on features, price, network and platform. Check out the phones (listed in alphabetical order by name).

    Everyone's budget is tight this year, but tipping is still expected by those who count it as a considerable part of their income.

  • 10 Hot Gadgets for the Holidays Friday, 20 Nov 2009 | 1:50 PM ET
    Even though the economy’s in the dumps, consumer electronics will still top many gift lists this holiday season. If you’re shopping for a gadget hound, the thousands of choices can be downright baffling. Here are a few that should make you a hit with friends and family.

    If you’re shopping for a gadget hound, the thousands of choices can be downright baffling. Here are a few that should make you a hit with friends and family.

  • Smartphone Guide Friday, 20 Nov 2009 | 3:49 PM ET
    Smart phones are at the top of a lot of holiday shopping lists this year, and with the number of models available, choosing the right one can be tricky. Here's a need-to-know guide to nine devices, based on on features, price, network and platform. Check out the phones (listed in alphabetical order by name).

    Smartphones are at the top of holiday shopping lists this year, and with so many different models available, choosing the right one can be tricky. Check out our guide!

  • Most-Downloaded Christmas Songs Friday, 11 Dec 2009 | 11:22 AM ET
    Radio stations are playing Christmas songs seemingly nonstop, but which ones are consumers actually buying? Since digital downloading is now the most popular way to buy an individual song, we took a look at sales compiled by media measurement company BigChampagne from Apple’s iTunes store. The digital store accounts for 69 percent of the downloaded music market, according to market research group NPD Group. The top ten-list turned out to be a mix of classics and fresh remakes from current artist

    The top ten-list turned out to be a mix of classics and fresh remakes from current artists. Check out the top -ten songs for the week ending Dec. 2, 2009.

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