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Same Retailers This BF: Analysts

Few surprises are expected to emerge from the ranks of retail chains and channels that will be the most aggressive in Black Friday TV pricing promotions this year, analysts say.

The top price-slashing chains and channels are again expected to come from discounters led by Wal-Mart; CE chains led by Best Buy and Circuit City; and to a greater degree warehouse clubs, led by Costco, analysts tell TWICE.

“This year, I would expect all retailers to be fairly aggressive and emphasize higher margin attachments and services this year,” said Ross Young, president of DisplaySearch, an NPD Group company.

“Expect Best Buy to capitalize on their lead in the market and Costco to be nippin’ at their heels,” said Tamaryn Pratt, Quixel analyst.

“As always — Best Buy will lead the charge,” predicted Riddhi Patel, iSuppli TV systems principal analyst. “But stores like Costco, Sam’s Club and Wal-Mart will give stiff competition as they have increased the number of flat-panel SKUs and due to their lower margin structure, they will be able to provide consumers with very attractive margins.”

Sang Tang, Current Analysis West HDTV analyst said: “The club and mass channel are going to lead the price aggression charge this year, with Wal-Mart and Costco leading the way. Wal-Mart will be aggressive with 42-inch LCDs, while 52-inch LCDs should see big cuts at Costco.”

“In the CE channel, Circuit City will be very aggressive with 42-inch LCDs,” Tang predicted.