The following ran on the Nov. 28, 2011, CW33 broadcast. Economist Bernard Weinstein provided expertise for this story.
December 9, 2011
By Charles Bassett
Dallas, Texas—Cyber week on-line specials -- all week through Friday. Wal-mart was the first to extend the specials and other retailers soon followed including Target.
"I was actually looking at treadmills at Wal-mart this morning so I may possibly get a treadmill. But who knows", said shopper Vanessa Stevens.
"I looked for my parents and some gifts for my family if I could find anything but I didn't find anything yet", said shopper Sasha Nouri.
With the rest of the week to go, retailers are banking these shoppers will come back for a bargain.
"Yeah I always do. Yeah I end up finding something", Nouri said.
More than 122 million Americans took advantage of Cyber Monday sales. That number is up by 16 million over last year. Nearly eight out 10 retailers are offering some sort of deals.
"'This is good news but I'm a little skeptical because if we shop more on-line that means we're shopping less at the brick and mortar stores", said SMU Economist Bud Weinstein.
Weinstein says with the record sales on Black Friday and a week of on-line sales, it's still too early to tell if this is a sign of an upturn in the U.S. economy.
"There's some evidence that the economy is very slowly starting to heal, starting to grow again. But there are a lot of uncertainties out there and I certainly don't expect this holiday shopping bonanza to be the harbinger of a rapidly growing economy next year", Weinstein said.
And he cautions, some popular sale items can actually mean a setback.
"Most of what we're buying are electronics and clothing and most of that stuff is made abroad. So it's not necessarily helping revive the U.S. economy", Weinstein said.
But with all the competition on line and its continued growth, he says the consumers still win with the low prices.