NEW YORK (Reuters) - Wal-Mart Stores Inc is slashing prices on flat screen TVs and selling 12-pound turkeys for less than $5 each as the discounter looks to appeal to shoppers preparing for the U.S. Thanksgiving holiday.
The efforts build on the retailer’s plan, announced last month, to slash prices in its U.S. Walmart stores every week until Christmas. It has already lowered prices on popular toys and groceries, like bananas and ground beef.
The latest cuts include slashing the price of a Sharp 1080p 42-inch high definition TV by 35 percent to $498 from $768, and selling a Sony Blu-ray player for $148, down from its current price of roughly $197.
In its grocery aisles, Walmart will begin selling on Wednesday select turkeys for 40 cents per pound, meaning a 12 pound turkey could be purchased for $4.80.
“It’s two areas -- between food and entertaining -- that are a big focal point for us at this time,” said Steve Bratspies, Walmart’s general merchandise manager for dry groceries.
Grocery stores often sell turkeys at a loss around Thanksgiving. The hope is that shoppers, lured by the special prices, will load their baskets with other ingredients for the holiday feast. On Safeway.com, shoppers who spend $200 or more can currently get a free 8 pound to 12 pound turkey.
Walmart said that according to a survey by the American Farm Bureau Federation, last year’s average cost of a turkey was roughly $1.19 per pound. It would not comment on whether it was selling the turkeys at a loss.
Lowered electronics prices will be good in its stores from November 7 through November 13, or while supplies last.
Walmart will also sell a Hewlett-Packard notebook computer with 3 gigabytes of memory and Microsoft’s Windows 7 operating system for $298.
Shoppers who buy the Xbox 360 arcade video game console for $199, will receive a $100 Walmart gift card that can be used on a future purchase.
Walmart has said it intends to be the price leader this holiday to beat rivals and win sales. But competitors, ranging from Target Corp to Amazon.com Inc, are responding with price cuts of their own or offers to match rivals’ prices.
A Sony Blu-ray player with the same model number as the one that Walmart will be offering for $148 is available on Amazon.com for $148.97.
Meanwhile, Walmart.com is already touting its online Christmas shop, complete with artificial trees, $10 toys and decorative lighting.
Reporting by Nicole Maestri; Editing Bernard Orr