Quoted – Smart Spending: How to Save on Valentine Flowers – ABC News

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Smart Spending: How to Save on Valentine Flowers – ABC News

It shouldn’t come as a surprise that prices of red roses increase right before Valentine’s Day. But Romeos on a budget don’t have to fall prey; they just need to act fast, now that Valentine’s is only three days away.

Ordering online from sites that work directly with growers is generally the best way to save on Valentine roses. You can get up to 30 percent off — and often get fresher flowers, says Scott Testa, assistant professor of business administration at Cabrini College, in Radnor, Pa. Just remember you’ll usually have to arrange them yourself.

http://abcnews.go.com/Business/wirestory?id=9807718&page=1

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Quoted – Valentine’s Day War of the Roses – How to buy flowers for Valentine’s Day – SmartMoney

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Quoted – Valentine’s Day War of the Roses – How to buy flowers for Valentine’s Day  – SmartMoney

Getting a good deal on flowers this Valentine’s Day requires that you not linger too long when you stop to smell the roses.

In times of high demand, not all flower sellers are created equal, says Scott Testa, an assistant professor of business administration at Cabrini College in Radnor, Pa. Before you order, read both recent consumer reviews and ones from Valentine’s Day last year. If you’re buying online, be sure to check the fine print to see if the bouquet will come pre-arranged by a local florist or shipped in a box from the grower, he says. The latter can be cheaper, but it usually entails do-it-yourself arranging and may not include a vase.

Read more: Valentine’s Day War of the Roses (Page 2 of 2) at SmartMoney.com http://www.smartmoney.com/Spending/Deals/Valentines-Day-War-of-the-Roses/?page=2#ixzz0eHuMMy1F

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Quoted – Sales rise, retailers optimistic – The Chronicle

Sales rise, retailers optimistic

By LOU WILIN

Retailers report stronger Black Friday sales this year than last year and they are cautiously optimistic about the rest of the Christmas season.

“So far, so good,” said Debbi Baker, store manager of Christopher & Banks, a women’s clothing store at Findlay Village Mall. “My Black Friday was better (than last year’s).”

David Lazar, store manager of Elder-Beerman at the mall, was cheerier.

“We are happy. We are very, very happy,” with Elder-Beerman’s sales numbers last weekend, he said.

National and regional research companies reported slight sales increases last weekend from a year ago.

In Ottawa, Walmart Manager Shane Sidle is patient.

“Things have been steady, steady with last year,” he said. Sales will probably strengthen in the 10 days before Christmas, Sidle said.

“The last couple of years, that is how it has been,” he said.

The recession has lowered retailers’ sales expectations, and rightly so.

“Consumers are very leery about spending money over the holidays,” said Scott Testa, business administration professor at Cabrini College, Radnor, Pa.

Retailers are coping by spreading out the shopping season. Christopher & Banks at the mall got its Christmas season inventory in early November, three weeks earlier than usual, said Baker, the manager. She even got resort wear, outfits women will wear on trips in the next season. Baker does not usually see those until mid-December.

“They kind of bulked me up, and whatever I have got, it has to go,” she said.

In Fostoria, Kmart Assistant Manager Bridget Weslow said the store’s layaway policy “is what is keeping people coming in.”

Testa said people this year are seeking more practical gifts, like tires, tools and car wax instead of, say, jewelry.

But flat screen TVs and video game systems are still hot items, Sidle said.

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