Will last-minute shoppers find the bargains they're looking for?

A man carries a shopping bag two days before Christmas in Berlin, Germany.

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STEVE CHIOTAKIS: For millions of people across the country, Christmas shopping isn't even close to being finished.

Guilty.

A lot of folks, of course, are procrastinating.

Guilty again.

But a few are holding out for better deals. Are retailers likely to oblige? Here's Marketplace's Alisa Roth.


ALISA ROTH: All the good sales used to be after Christmas. Then the financial crisis happened. And stores got desperate. So they started having sales before Christmas. And now some shoppers wait as long as they can, hoping they'll get bigger and better discounts.

Marshal Cohen is a retail analyst at the NPD Group. He says it's not going to happen.

MARSHAL COHEN: You're going to get 50 off on selected items and categories within the store, but not necessarily store-wide.

There were some big sales early on, around Thanksgiving. But the retail business has been doing much better this holiday season.

John Long is a retail analyst at Kurt Salmon Associates. He says that changes everything for stores.

JOHN LONG: They've really managed inventories better this year. And so there is a lot less obsolete inventory they're going to be faced with trying to clear out in the spring, in the early spring months.

Which isn't to say there won't be deals come January, especially on seasonal things like sweaters. But if you've been waiting til Christmas Eve in the hopes of some door-busting bargains, you might as well get on with it already.

In New York I'm Alisa Roth for Marketplace.

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