Economic Woes Sink Retail Sales

Consumers could see lower prices this holiday season
By Jim O'Neill,  Newser User
Posted Oct 23, 2007 6:08 PM CDT
Crowds fill the halls Concord Mills in Charlotte, North Carolina, for a second day of holiday shopping fever on Saturday, November 27, 2004.   (KRT Photos)
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(Newser) – With the holiday shopping season set to kick off, retailers are lowering prices on thousands of items to clear space for seasonal products, cutting into profits and producing the worst drop in week-to-week sales since May, Bloomberg reports. US retail sales for the week ending Oct. 20 fell 1.5% from the previous week, said an industry group.

This year's holiday sales could show the slowest growth in five years, as shoppers expect to increase their spending just 3.7%, to an average of $923. To entice consumers faced with rising gas and food costs, along with housing woes, Macy's cut prices on jewelry, handbags and shoes; Wal-Mart rolled back prices on more than 15,000 items.