12/26/2008 05:12 am ET Updated May 25, 2011

Retailers Pull Out All Stops To Stir Black Friday Buying

The university administrator also received a personal call for the first time from a Nordstrom Inc. clerk encouraging her to stop by the store during the next week.

As U.S. consumers ready their Thanksgiving tables, retailers are gearing up for Black Friday, the day after Thanksgiving, which marks the start of their biggest selling season of the year. Store operators' sense of urgency was heightened this year after the financial-sector meltdown, the declining values of homes and retirement funds, and mounting job losses led to plunging consumer confidence and a freeze in consumer spending in September and October.

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