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Holiday Central 2009

  • Skip The Hype and Snag The Best Black Friday Deals Friday, 20 Nov 2009 | 1:59 PM ET
    Shoppers stand with their bags at Macy's on 'Black Friday' in New York City.

    It's easy to get caught up in the hype surrounding Black Friday, but to truly get the best deals, keep these retail secrets in mind.

  • 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.

  • Black Friday, You're Dead to Me Friday, 20 Nov 2009 | 2:00 PM ET
    Customers wait in line to pay for their items on Black Friday at KB Toys in King of Prussia, Pennsylvania.

    The recession has taught retailers and consumers new lessons about the art of a deal. In the process, Black Friday, the traditional first day of the holiday shopping season, has lost some of its luster.

  • 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.

  • 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.

  • Confessions of a Black Friday Shopper Tuesday, 24 Nov 2009 | 8:07 PM ET

    Black Friday deals may not be as good as they once were as the day evolves into more of a marketing event, but that doesn't stop some shoppers from venturing out.

  • 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.

  • Retailers Should Believe in Christmas Miracles Friday, 20 Nov 2009 | 1:58 PM ET
    Westfield shopping centre Christmas lights in London, England.

    Although consumers are mired in the deepest recession in decades, there are plenty of reasons to believe that this holiday season will not be as bad for retailers as last year.

  • 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.

  • 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.

  • 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.

  • 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!

  • Holiday Tipping: Who And How Much Friday, 20 Nov 2009 | 2:29 PM ET

    With Americans cutting back on spending because of the recession, holiday tipping will take another hit this year.

  • 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.

  • 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.

  • For Retailers, Charity Begins at the Store Wednesday, 23 Dec 2009 | 1:58 PM ET

    From Macy’s to Williams-Sonoma and Sears, retailers are tying more purchases to a worthy cause, banking on the premise that socially conscious buying is in and conspicuous consumption is out.

  • 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.

  • 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!

  • 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.

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