Retailers slashing prices


Massive markdowns before the holidays are good news for procrastinators but could be a bad sign for the retail industry.

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Massive markdowns before the holidays are good news for procrastinators but could be a bad sign for the retail industry.

While scattered markdowns are standard every year, discounts across entire stores — which analysts say are more widespread than last year — suggest merchants are stuck with too much merchandise.

“It’s really a game of chicken,” said David Bassuk, managing director and head of the retail practice at the consultant firm AlixPartners.

Many retailers entered the season “with pretty optimistic plans” that shoppers would rush into stores and pay full price, Mr. Bassuk said. But that did not pan out, and the final days before Christmas have retailers being “much more aggressive in terms of promotions being offered,” he said.

Read more from The New York Times.

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