Holiday Shopping Keeps Retailers & Shoppers Busy

Christmas is just two weeks away and that means crunch time for shoppers! Here in Texoma stores are packed, and traffic is at times hectic around the shopping centers. On the heels of Black Friday which saw 226 million shoppers and billions of dollars in spending; retailers are taking advantage of the holiday season offering plenty of bargains and extended hours.

'Tis the season for shopping.

"Shopping. Shopping for Christmas gifts," said Phil and Lisa Patterson.

On Sunday inside Target customers lined up and checked out and for many this wasn't their last stop it was just one of a number on their list.

"Yes. Not sure how many more because pretty much she tells us where we're going," said Holiday Shopper Jesse Higer.
"A lot more. We have a lot of grandchildren and children," said the Patterson's.

While it was busy both outside and inside Target foot traffic was actually down.

"The ones that are coming into the store are a little bit less, but the ones that are coming are actually buying more than they bought last year," said Target Store Manager, Kerry Beaver.

One thing that has retailers keeping steady this season are extended holiday hours.

"We have a lot of guests that like to shop later and we're busy up until we close, 11 p.m.," said Beaver.

Retail analysts report  sales this year are predicted to increase anywhere from 2 to 5 percent over last year, but with unemployment sitting at 8.6 percent shopper Edna Wyatt, who left her job this year is cautiously spending.

"I'm looking for bargains," she said.

"We're always shopping for bargains and for stuff on sale. That's why we're here today, seeing what's one sale," said Phil and Lisa Patterson.

If check-out lines and traffic are any indication of how well this season will fare, things do look encouraging

According to the National Retail Federation many people are purchasing gift cards this year. Eight in ten Americans are expected to buy some this year.

Crystal Hall Newschannel 6.