Christmas already? Retailers hope to recover from poor summer sales

Scary masks and fall foliage have been gradually crowding out the swim goggles and garden fencing at my local dollar store. When I first noticed the August trend toward ghouls and gourds, I complained to dollar store staff, "it's too early for this stuff!" A couple of weeks before Halloween, Christmas stock will start making an appearance but, according to an article in the Toronto Star newspaper, Christmas has already arrived at some stores.

According to the article, desperate retailers are hoping to recover from the poor sales of the first part of the year, so at Costco, for instance, Christmas trees are parked beside the barbecues left over from an unseasonably cool Ontario summer, and the Sears Christmas catalog has long-since been delivered, although the store won't be carrying holiday merchandise until October, as usual.