In December 2007, the dollar amount of retail sales in department stores totaled $30.5 billion. This was a 42 percent jump from the previous month (21.5 billion).
The Census Bureau stated that sizable gains in sales between November and December 2007 were noted in book stores (78 %), clothing stores (37 %), jewelry stores (137 %), radio, TV and electronics stores (46%) and sporting goods retailers (53%).
I usually give each person on my list a book for the holiday season. It makes sense; I'm a writer. :) Plus, I am one in a family of voracious readers.
If you have a person on your list who enjoys the Harry Potter series, check out The Tales of Beedle the Bard by J.K. Rowling. I know one of my daughters will be happy that I pre-ordered it from Amazon. :)