Experts Say 73 Percent Of Americans Have Not Finished Holiday Shopping

NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) – Crowds of last-minute shoppers flocked to the stores for ‘Super Saturday’ to finish their gift-getting his holiday season.

“We’re not done at all,” a shopper in Herald Square told CBS 2’s Dave Carlin on Saturday.

“It is definitely crazy,” another shopper added.

It’s estimated that 73 percent of Americans have not yet finished their Christmas shopping, CBS 2’s Carlin reported.

“There are a lot of people but it’s going nicely,” one woman braving the crowds told Carlin.

Merchants rolled out the discounts, as many retailers rang up the single best day of the year.

Members of the 34th Street Partnership manned four corners in Midtown with handheld counters from 7 a.m. to 2 p.m. on Saturday, tallying the number of shopping bags being toted.

This year, the group counted 21,966 shopping bags. The group counted 17,290 bags last year, marking a 27 percent increase this year.

The 34th Street Partnership also conducted a survey of 727 shoppers and found 41 percent are spending more this year over the 2011 holiday season, while 36 percent said they are spending less. Nearly a quarter of respondents said they plan to spend the same this year, Carlin reported.

“Consumers have more information than ever at their fingertips so they can actually, if you’re a smart shopper, you can get a great deal these days,” said Vice President Shauna Causey.

She added that savvy shoppers spend research time on the internet and set up online price alerts.

It’s how they learn about deals that, in this competitive environment, can change from hour to hour.

Many shoppers continue to flood brick-and-mortar stores to stock up on stocking stuffers and big gifts.

“Foot traffic growth has been solid but people are still very tight with their purse strings,” retail analyst Craig Johnson said.

Johnson said this year, sales will likely fall short of expected growth. Shoppers may be holding back because of uncertainty in the economy and worries about the fiscal cliff, CBS 2’s Amy Dardashtian reported.

“It’s not terrible growth but it’s tepid, sluggish growth at best,” Johnson said.

There will always be those truly last-minute shoppers. The National Retail Federation estimates about 10 percent of people will finish their shopping on Christmas Eve, getting the gifts under the tree just in the nick of time.

Have you finished your holiday shopping yet? Let us know in the comments section below…