Wal-Mart vows to match rival Black Friday discounts
Big-box behemoth Wal-Mart hopes to steal its competitors' thunder this Black Friday by promising to match their blockbuster deals.
Wal-Mart, which will keep many stores open 24 hours on Friday, said shoppers who bring in a rival ad can get their prices reduced at the cash register. The move is an aggressive bid by the world's largest retailer to capture a greater share of buzzworthy traffic on Black Friday, the traditional kickoff to the holiday shopping season. According to the National Retail Federation, 138 million people are expected to hit the stores in the three days after Thanksgiving, up four million from last year.
Retailers began the holiday battles extra early this year, with Sears holding its first "Black Friday" sale before Halloween. Best Buy rolled out its first promotions roughly a week earlier than last year, company co-president Shari Ballard said. But Black Friday still holds an unmatched cultural weight: One Florida family has already lined up outside a store in St. Petersburg.
"It's aggressive across the board," Ballard said.
All the deep discounting begs the question: Will prices go any lower? Retailers keep mum, but shoppers can be sure that the holiday price wars are not over yet.
Ylan Q. Mui
| November 22, 2010; 12:20 PM ET
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