For general discussion and debate. Possible talking point: Where did all the shoppers go?
Despite a flurry of last-minute shoppers lured by the deep discounts, total retail sales, excluding automobiles, fell over the year-earlier period by 5.5% in November and 8% in December through Christmas Eve, according to MasterCard Inc.'s SpendingPulse unit....The holiday retail-sales decline was much worse than the already-dire picture painted by industry forecasts, which had predicted sales ranging from a 1% drop to a more optimistic increase of 2.2%.
How was your Christmas from a spending perspective? Did you spend more, less, or the same as last year? If you spent less, how did you allocate funds to lessen the "pain," and how did your family members respond?