Last Minute Christmas Shopping

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By Catalina Trivino

Today is the last full day of shopping before Christmas eve... and according to the National Retail Federation, it's the most optimistic retail forecast they've released since the recession.

With Christmas falling on a Tuesday this year, shoppers have an extra weekend to finish up their shopping -- and taking full advantage of it.

Retailers have geared up for one of their busiest days of the year. As the cash registers are ringing constantly.

"We would almost not have anyone on the floor because we've got everyone in check lanes or in electronics. Literally, every check lane was open and we were still backed up to the jewelry boat," Said Target of Prattville ETL Sales Floor Leader, Katie Jackson. 

She says she's seen a higher volume of people coming in to shop compared to last year. According to the National Retail Federation, they expect a solid growth of cash reeling in this holiday season -- a 4.1-percent increase, estimating a total of about $586 billion in holiday sales.

But while national numbers are up, some shoppers say they aren't spending as much.

"I'm actually spending less than last year I told my kids they weren't going to get as much as they were last year, so I've gotten them four or five gifts a piece and I'm pretty much done," Said one shopper, Sarita Johnson.

Still, the rush is on. And shoppers say the last-minute dash before the Christmas holiday is a must to get everything checked off their list.

"We are getting a few things we need for a breakfast we're having cCristmas morning and getting stocking stuffers, that's kind of always a last minute thing that we do and a couple of gifts that have been over-looked," Said another shopper, Stephanie Dennis.

Many stores will be open on Christmas Eve, as well, so if you have to run out and get some last minute gifts, you still have one more day. Of course keep in mind, some stores will be closing earlier. 

The NRF says this holida forecast is higher than the average from the last 10 years... with a .6% increase. The NRF also says, it's the most optimistic retail forecast they've released since the recession.

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