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Survey hints at fewer Thanksgiving shoppers

The number of people planning to go shopping during Thanksgiving weekend dropped slightly, according to a survey by the National Retail Federation.

As many as 140 million people said they planned to visit stores over the holiday weekend, down from 147 million last year.

The survey, released Friday, also revealed that 23.5 percent of consumers, or 33 million, say they will shop on Thanksgiving Day. Black Friday -- the day after Thanksgiving -- will still draw the most shoppers of the weekend, with 69 percent, or 97 million, indicating they will shop.

With only four weeks between Thanksgiving and Christmas this year, merchants are trying to stretch out the shopping season. Another NRF survey found that 51 percent of retailers said they will start their Thanksgiving online promotions at least five days before the big weekend.

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