Retailing: A Bell Ringer

All the year needed was a final record to top it off—and last week the record was assured. Despite six fewer shopping days between Thanksgiving and Christmas, despite the earlier pessimism of many merchants, despite even the shock of President Kennedy's assassination, Christmas sales set an all-time high. Last year's record was broken by Dec. 21, when sales were running 5% above a year ago. Christmas figures from many big cities showed the extent of the gain: 10% over last year in Houston, 5% in Boston, 3% in Chicago, 9% in Detroit, 9% in New York.

Less Frivolity. Booming Christmas...

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