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Consumer confidential: Holiday spending, holiday mail

December 14, 2009 |  7:33 am

Here's your mortifying Monday roundup of consumer news from around the Web:

-- We plan to spend less this holiday season -- really. That's the word from the latest CNN poll, which finds that about half of us say we'll be cutting back in the fiscal-outlay department for the holidays, and only 12% say they'll be spending more than last year. About half of us say we'll be cutting back on the charitable giving as well. The reason, of course, is the soggy state of the economy. Um, we need a poll to tell us this?

-- Going to the post office today? Get ready to stand in line. The postal service says this is the busiest mailing day of the year, with 830 million pieces of mail entering the system as the holiday season kicks into high gear. That's up 40% from the typical day's load. Maybe today of all days is this the one where you should give your letter carrier a friendly smile.

-- David Lazarus