Reporting Dorothy Tucker
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CHICAGO (CBS) – In a surprise twist, despite the poor economy, one of the hottest gifts this holiday season is televisions. Sales are up because prices keep dropping.
CBS 2’s Dorothy Tucker explains that the best news is doorbuster deals featuring TV’s are expected to continue until Christmas.
Shopper Aldo Cervantes says he’s looking for “something like LED.”
LED TVs are hot sellers this year. A 40-inch Sony at Target is at the top of Aldo Cervantes’ Christmas list. And at $599, a discount of $200, he’s ready to buy.
Cervantes says “I already decided, so I just need to do it.”
With sales everywhere, this holiday season has turned in to a great time to buy a TV – even the big name brands like RCA, Panasonic and Magnavox.
Experts say TV sales at some stores are up 15% this year, compared to just 2% last year.
“I think part of it is pent-up demand,” says Morningstar retail analyst R.J. Hottovy.
The other part, he says, are deeper discounts on popular models, especially the ones with bigger screens.
“In some case 20, 30 and extreme cases 50% off where they were a year ago,” Hottovy says.
At Kmart, someone put a 50-inch plasma TV on layaway when it sold for $399 on Black Friday. The regular price was $649.
You’ll also find great deals this year on 3D TVs.
“You could see more sales on those closer to the holiday as retailers look to get rid of inventory,” Hottovy says.
Abt recently advertised a 55-inch Sony 3D TV for $1998 – $900 off its regular price of $2899.
And, Sears recently sold a 51-inch 3D plasma for just $899 – down from $1199.
Shopper Sunny Bioseh is looking for a Smart TV, one that’s Internet connected.
“During the holiday period you definitely get a better deal,” she says.
Retailers say there should be more sales on those TVs between now and Christmas.
What kind of deals can we expect? Sears Store Manager Jarvis Evans says “you’ll see $100 off, $200 off; it depends on the TV model chosen or the brand chosen.”
Another reason television sales are up is that people are buying their second or third television set.