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SEASON'S GREETINGS FROM THE NATION'S CONSUMERS

     Roughly three out of four Americans plan to spend at least
as much this holiday season as they did last year, according to a
nationwide consumer survey released today by Arthur Andersen,
LLP.  Jay Scansaroli, managing partner for Arthur Andersen's
worldwide retail practice:  "We've seen job growth, low
inflation, and rising disposable incomes in 1994.  And, although
consumer debt has grown during the year, it has not seemed to put
a damper on the holiday spending spirit."  OTHER SURVEY FINDINGS:
78% of the 1,050 consumers surveyed plan to pay for holiday gifts
mostly by cash or check -- only 22% plan to use mostly credit;
apparel is likely to be the strongest sales category, with
consumers planning to spend 35% of their holiday budget on
clothing; toys represent the second strongest category, drawing
22% of consumer budgets; and electronic items came in third with
13% of consumer budgets.  WHERE TO SHOP?:  Nationwide, consumers
plan to do 44% of their holiday spending at department stores;
22% at discounters; and 10% at specialty stores (Arthur
Andersen).
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