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Among the throngs of Americans prowling the malls and trawling ?e-commerce sites, it turns out that many Christmas shoppers are looking out for themselves. Retail-research firm NPD Group in mid-December said that, thus far, about one third of consumers have engaged in what is euphemistically called self-gifting. That’s up from 12 percent in a typical pre-recession year, and up from the 19 percent who said they planned to do so last year. The National Retail Federation, the dispenser of all holiday-related data, said that in 2012, nearly 60 percent of shoppers would engage in the practice.
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