Boom Until Christmas

U.S. department-store sales are back in the groove. The Federal Reserve Board last week estimated that in the Sept. 5 week sales in the San Francisco area boomed 49% over last year, Kansas City volume jumped 43%, nationwide sales rose 25%. Total sales in the preceding week were 13% below 1941.

Most of this increase came because Labor Day was six days later this year than last. It was also the combination of more customers and more dollars than storekeepers have seen since spring. Result is that U.S. merchants have ditched their gloomy...

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