Toys Poised For Holiday Hype

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Toy Insider breaks down categories by age as well, providing gift-givers (presumably including Santa Claus) with insight on toys and children’s entertainment, according to the site. Reviews tag toys according to which skills they promote, including large and small motor skills, emotional and social skills including language development and school readiness.

“Toys that enhance kids’ knowledge of science, technology, engineering, and math (STEM) can help turn intimidating subjects into fun play experiences,” according to Toy Insider.

Sales of toys surged last year, and many more retailers got in the game. Macy’s added toys to its off-price Backstage stores as well as in full-line stores over the holidays, Hudson’s Bay added toys to its holiday merchandise and Kohl’s brought in the popular American Girl doll line for the season. Amazon’s toy sales last year were some $4 billion, about 20% of the market, according to Jeffries analyst Stephanie Wissink. More than half of those came during fewer than 60 selling days, and more than a third (35%) of sales took place in December alone. Recently bankrupt Toys R Uswas a stronger competitor last year, and Amazon is poised to benefit from its current struggles, according to a client note from global investment banking firm Jeffries.   MORE

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