Try digitalPLUS for 10 days for only $0.99

Consuming Interests

Consuming Interests A blog for the smart consumer
Trade groups forecast strong holiday season for retailers

Retailers are in for a strong, yet competitive holiday season, according to two forecasts out Thursday.

Sales in November and December are expected to rise 3.7 percent to $630.5 billion - a bigger jump than the 10-year average of 2.5 percent but less than last year's 4.1 percent gain, the National Retail Federation said.

Read more
Forums offered to give seniors information on consumer protection

Maryland Consumer Rights Coalition will host a series of free forums for Baltimore seniors to offer information about financial fraud and tax liens, teach them how to prepare a will and connect them to legal services.

The nonprofit will offer the event — called Securing Older Adult Resources, or SOAR — three times in October and three times in November. The first is planned from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m.

Read more
Have a new "EMV" credit card? You will soon.

To meet an Oct. 1 deadline, The Big Screen Store and The Sofa Store spent well over $10,000 to equip 14 showrooms with special credit card readers that will soon be nearly ubiquitous.

Read more
Planet Aid makes Baltimore site of its first retail store

You've seen the bright yellow Planet Aid bins in parking lots of gas stations, stores and other businesses, collecting donations of used clothes and shoes.

Now the Elkridge-based non-profit, which runs clothing recycling programs across the U.S. and uses proceeds for projects throughout the developing world, is opening its first-ever retail store.

Read more
Potbelly Sandwich Shop will open another shop downtown

Potbelly Sandwich Shop is opening its newest Baltimore location Friday in the Blaustein building downtown.

The chain, which touts its toasted sandwiches, hand-dipped milkshakes, made-to-order salads and live local music, already has 13 locations in the Baltimore metro area, including at the Inner Harbor and elsewhere in the city.

Read more
Kate Hudson-founded apparel shop, Fabletics, opens in Columbia

Fabletics, an athletic apparel retailer co-founded by actress Kate Hudson, is expanding from online to mall stores, including a location at The Mall in Columbia.

The third Fabletics shop in the U.S. opened Sept. 11 at the Columbia mall and has a grand opening scheduled for Thursday.

Read more