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Monday, December 25, 2006

Retailers Now Believe in Santa Claus

Santa Claus came to retailers this year two days before Christmas and stuck around until Christmas Eve as last minute shoppers hit the malls and stores around the United States to make the December 23rd the second biggest shopping day of the year.  The day after Thanksgiving was still number one with $8.96 billion. 

December 23rd racked up $8.72 billion dollars in sales not counting Wal-Mart.  Santa came and spent lots of cash and charged up his credit card buying lots of presents for good boys and girls and lots more gift cards.

This years sales are expected to top last years sales by about 5%.  That growth is 1.1% less than the growth seen last year however.  Shoppers had an extra week to shop this year with Christmas falling on a Monday, but after Christmas sales may not be as strong with many people returning to work on December 26th.

That could be good for decreasing early returns, but if the returns still come but lag into January and February with procrastinators and gift card sales of actual products come late it could cause retailers, distributors and manufacturers some resetting problems this Easter.