Loaded & Numb

Consumers did almost no scare buying last week. The dollar volume of U.S. department-store sales was just about the same as last year, and the unit volume was probably below. Groaned one merchandiser: "We could use a little scare buying." Storekeepers guessed that those who wanted to hoard had overstocked in July and were now living off of their fat. And the rest of the consumers, said one merchant, were "all scared out."

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