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Sales less merry, bright than retailers had hoped

Posted: December 27, 2012 at 12:20 a.m.

In this Wednesday, Dec. 19, 2012, photo, a customer shops for greeting cards at a Target store in Chicago. U.S. holiday retail sales this year are the weakest since 2008, after a shopping season disrupted by storms and rising uncertainty among consumers. A report out Tuesday, Dec. 25, 2012, that tracks spending, called MasterCard Advisors SpendingPulse, says holiday sales increased 0.7 percent. Analysts had expected sales to grow 3 to 4 percent. (AP Photo/Nam Y. Huh)

Shoppers spent cautiously this Christmas, a disappointment for retailers who slashed prices to lure people into stores and now must hope for a post-holiday spending burst.

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Business, Pages 21 on 12/27/2012

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