Cotten Timberlake bloomberg.com U.S. retailers are discounting earlier than ever as they brace for the weakest holiday shopping season since 2009. Wal-Mart Stores Inc. is dangling a 32-inch flat-screen TV for $98, down from $148 last year. Sears Holdings Corp. has waived layaway fees and its Kmart chain is introducing a rent-to-own program. More than a dozen retailers are opening earlier, or for the first time, on Thanksgiving Day. Among the attention-grabbing stunts: a $1 million jackpot for one of the first shoppers to visit Gap Inc.’s Old Navy chain on Black Friday. Faced with wary shoppers and a shorter holiday season, retailers are piling on deals as they jockey for market share during the most important sales period of the year. For the fourth year in a row, disposable incomes in 2013 have only inched up. to read more click here: bloomberg.com
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