Albuquerque Journal (Albuquerque, NM)

Stores Wait for Last-Minute Rush.(Business)

Byline: Michelle Pentz Journal Staff Writer

Well, it hasn't exactly been a lump of coal in the stocking, but this holiday shopping season isn't shaping up to the bounty retailers had hoped Santa would deliver.

This weekend will prove pivotal in either cashing in on or writing off the year's most crucial sales period.

Nationally, seasonal sales are slumping; locally, with a few exceptions, the picture is the same. Albuquerque merchants are reporting sales are down compared to last year though not drastically.

"This next weekend is super important," said Chris Derby, marketing director at Winrock Center. "We're counting on this week and weekend a lot."

Randy Sanchez, general manager at Coronado Center, agreed.

"It will put us over the top; it'll be the icing on the cake," he said. …

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