Shoppers Hit Stores but Mood Is Subdued

Worried about getting stuck with too much merchandise, many retailers are already selling shipments of computers and other high-priced items to liquidators, even before sending them to stores. Bill Angrick, the chief executive of Liquidity Services Inc., a firm that takes excess inventory from dozens of Fortune 500 retailers and operates online clearinghouse, said his auctions in days leading up to Black Friday increased more than eight times, compared to the year-earlier period.

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