Black November?
<b>Black November?</b>

The pumpkins are still fresh on peoples’ doorsteps, but Black Friday deals have started already. Though the retail market is showing signs of improvement,  holiday sales are expected to stay flat or decline this year, forcing many stores to break out their deals early in an attempt to lure more customers. Here’s our list of current bargains as well as deals you can expect to see in the coming weeks from your favorite retail stores. Photo Credit: timparkinson


While your kids were trick or treating, you could have been scouring the aisles of the nearest Sears. The store is rolling out new and great deals each week until Christmas, starting last week. Among the many deals, you can expect a 42 inch plasma TV for just $500, a mechanics tool kit with more than 300 pieces for $200 (half-price) and a pair of diamond stud earrings for $80. In fact, customers have already been spotted waiting in long lines outside Sears locations. Photo Credit: robinsonsmay


K-Mart has apparently decided to break with tradition somewhat and rechristen the day “Blue Friday.” Though the deals are not in place yet, information about them has leaked. There will be hundreds of discounted items available. Customers can expect half-off winter wear, digital cameras for 80 bucks, and a laptop for $120? Maybe you should get in line now. Photo Credit: robertstinnett


Wal-Mart (Stock Quote: WMT) is rolling back prices on 100 items, including everything from bargain priced electronics to discounted toys (this is on top of Wal-Mart’s existing promotion where 100 toys all sell for $10). Wal-Mart is also offering a Deal of the Day promotion from now through the end of the holidays. (As I write this, the current deal is for a 32 inch flat screen TV for $298.) As if that’s not enough, this weekend Wal Mart will be holding a quasi Black Saturday sale, a one-day only in-store bargain buffet. Photo Credit:


Wal-Mart and Amazon (Stock Quote: AMZN) have both lowered their book prices. (Target is doing this also). Now, you can get blockbuster novels for less than 10 bucks, but there are some limits on how many books you can buy at this bargain rate. Amazon has also announced scattered deals on toys for the holidays,  but for the most part, the online retail giant is being tight-lipped about releasing information on their Black Friday bargains. Photo Credit: Robert Scoble

Saks Fifth Avenue
<b>Saks Fifth Avenue</b>

The high-end department store chain is taking a different approach to November sales, emphasizing online membership. This year, Saks invited members of their e-mail listserv to an exclusive 36-hour sale online. And they plan to do another one later this month, so if you’re not on their listserv, you should sign up now. If that’s not enough reason to, Saks is now offering an extra 10 percent off the first order for all new subscribers who shop online. Photo Credit: S Baker

Toys R Us
<b>Toys R Us</b>

There are going to be a lot of happy children this month (not to mention parents who can breathe a sigh relief). Toys R Us recently released their Big Toy Book, a list of discounted children’s items for the holidays. There are deals for 25 percent off bike purchases, free Toy Story backpacks (with a purchase of $25 or more) and cheap FAO Schwartz items now being sold at Toys R Us. To see the original ad, check here. Photo Credit: DOCK

Office Max
<b>Office Max</b>

This one is for the adults. Office Max’s Black Friday deals were the first to be leaked this year. The company later retaliated against the sites publishing their deals, but this still provides a good idea for what customers can expect in a few weeks.Notable deals include an Olympus digital camera for 50 bucks, an Acer netbook for $150 and 50 percent off video games. Photo Credit: Stephen Glauser