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Best Buy Joining Pre-Black Friday Parade

– Best Buy is offering Black Friday prices on select TVs one week ahead of the
Thanksgiving weekend.

The deals, effective today on a pair of private-label Dynex LCDs,
and effective Sunday on a several Samsung LCD and plasma panels, follow
month-long pre-Black Friday sales events by Sears, Walmart and other CE

Best Buy dropped the price of its 32-inch Dynex 720p LCD by $80, to
$300, and lowered the retail on its 40-inch 1080p model by $50, to $500. Both
sets have 60Hz refresh rates.

On Sunday, Nov. 22, the chain will also offer Black Friday sale
pricing on several Samsung models, including a 32-inch 720p LCD for $398 and a
50-inch, 720p plasma for $698.

All four offers appeared in Best Buy Black Friday circulars that
were leaked online earlier this month.

But despite the pre-holiday hoopla, CE price cuts appear less
dramatic than last year. “Promotional activity in the sector remains rational
and discounts are actually down … across most retailers,” observed Credit Suisse
analyst Gary Balter, based on a review of leaked Black Friday circulars from major
CE dealers.

Best Buy’s average discount on TVs, for example, is 13 percent
vs. 24 percent last year, Balter reported in a research note. That, plus
tighter inventory levels and a possible crackdown by several major vendors on online
MAP violations, should bode well for dealer margins, he said.