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by Martin Moylan

Bloomington, Minn. – Retailers at the Mall of America — like their counterparts across the state and nation — are hoping they’ll get a post-Christmas sales kick to spruce up what has been a very sluggish holiday season.

Indeed, some shoppers are opening their wallets, seduced by deep discounts. Dannette Coleman of Eagan was impressed with the after-Christmas deals she found.

“You’re seeing stores that were marked down 50 percent before the holidays,” she said. “Now they’re an additional 40 percent off that. So, it’s definitely a good day to get a good deal. You just can’t seem to get away from the sales, which is good thing. But I think it really shows how tough this Christmas was.”

Other shoppers expect even better deals. Kristy McClellan of Burnsville wasn’t blown away by sale prices.

“I don’t think it’s any better than in past years, personally,” she said. “Fifty percent off. We got some wrapping paper and a few extra gifts for ourselves. It’s good, but I thought it’d be better.”

Cordell McClain of Maplewood had a similar assessment.

“The deals before Christmas this time were pretty good — 50 percent off all that kind of good stuff,” he said. “I’m seeing the same deals I’ve seen before Christmas.” Whether they’re about the same deals that were out there before Christmas or not, they are substantial deals.

After Christmas, Macy’s, for instance, slashed prices for diamond earrings in 14-carat white gold by more than 60 percent. Select Comfort cut prices for some beds by 50 percent. And Best But offered three years no-interest financing on big-screen TVs.

Such discounts are coming as the International Council of Shopping Centers continues to project the worst holiday sales decline for retailers in at least four decades.

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