South Mississippians continue to shop amidst tough times

By Elise Roberts - bio | email

GULFPORT, MS (WLOX) - Economists are predicting a weak holiday shopping season this year. With retail sales steadily on the decline, many feel the financial markets will remain under severe strain through the end of the year.

However, despite the weak economy and slump in retail sales, there was no shortage of shoppers in Gulfport Saturday afternoon.

Gail Siler spent the day searching for deals ahead of what's expected to be a bleak holiday shopping season.

"We're just going to take it a little easy this year just in case things don't pan out. We're all kind of concerned how the economy is going to turn out," said Siler.

However, Siler isn't the only one taking it easy this year.

"I think I want to get a Play Station 3 for the kids, other than that, I think that's going to be the biggest thing that I buy for Christmas this year," said Pascagoula resident Isaiah Sellers.

Seller is also scaling back, joining a number of consumers who are shopping a little bit smarter. It's a mindset Best Buy managers say they are prepared for.

"We're very good with reacting to the consumer's needs, and we understand economic times," said General Manager Steve Moses.

This is the Gulfport store's opening weekend in a new location. While numbers are down in other parts of the country, Moses says business is booming at the electronics super-store.

"We feel this is a shortfall economic turn. We've already reacted to it. We're still showing growth in our stores. This is proof in the pudding that we opened this store, and we've got three more slated in our market already," said Moses.

So while many are planning to cut back this holiday season, it seems as though South Mississippi shoppers will continue to spend.