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• The Associated Press reports that Walmart "is upping the price game for the crucial back-to-school shopping season. The world's largest retailer has cut prices on 10 percent more back-to-school items compared with last year, signaling that the second-most important shopping season behind the winter holidays will be fiercely competitive. The Bentonville, Arkansas-based retailer also said that it's increasing the number of back-to-school products sold on its website by 30 percent to 75,000 this year from last year."

Timing is everything … and interestingly, USA Today has a story saying that "back-to-school shopping is no longer a frenzied one-day spending spree. Families are spending more, but they are doing so over a longer period of time as they search for the best deals.

"Families are expected to spend $670 on average on back-to-school shopping, up 5% from last year, according to data out Thursday from the National Retail Federation. That includes spending on school supplies, clothes and electronics. But analysts and parents say the slow economic recovery, plus access to near-constant online deals, means back-to-school shopping is no longer a big event."
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