UPDATE: Shopping brisk during Miss.'s 1st tax holiday

JACKSON — Drawn by end-of-the-season sales and Mississippi’s first sales tax holiday, shoppers filled malls, stores and boutiques on Friday.

Popfizz owner Susan Malouf says more than 50 people had come through her children’s clothing boutique in Jackson within an hour after it had opened. Shoppers get a break on the state’s 7 percent sales tax on Friday and Saturday.

Stores are offering their own incentives to draw even bigger crowds. At Popfizz, shoppers get up to 70 percent off of summer clearance items.

Legislators approved the sales tax holiday this year, hoping to stimulate Mississippi’s sluggish economy.

In Tupelo, Machelle Pitcock’s Ladybug Children’s Boutique was among six downtown stores that went beyond the state’s tax holiday, and began giving a sales tax break on Tuesday. They also included more merchandise than clothing.

“Because of the stipulations, people were confused and couldn’t buy things they needed like backpacks. We just stepped in,” she said, adding that the retailers didn’t expect to take a loss on the venture.

“Our tax base is 7.5 percent. Most of the stuff that comes in we put is on sale for 10 percent off. It’s not going to be that much of an impact on us,” said Pitcock.

Daily Journal business reporter Carlie Kollath writes on Twitter (twitter.com/carlie_kollath) that Downtown Tupelo retailers are reporting steady traffic for “sales tax on us” week. Not as busy as Christmas, but busy for Friday.

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Staff and wire reports

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