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Holiday shopping: A great sale rewards your brain (Video)

Monday - 12/16/2013, 5:38am  ET

black friday shopping TV (Andrew Kelly/Getty Images News/Getty Images)
More shoppers are expecting sales, and those sales mean trigger the brain. (Andrew Kelly/Getty Images News/Getty Images)

With fewer than 10 days to Christmas, how are you doing with your holiday shipping and shopping? Are you finding more deals this year? Or are you disappointed? Any tips? Post a comment in this story, comment on WTOP's Facebook Page or use #WTOP on Twitter.

WASHINGTON - Is it the deep economic downturn of the past several years or has something else caused shoppers to demand discounts when they shop? These days, when people shop, they expect to find things on sale.

CBS News reports that shoppers used to be pleased if retailers knocked off 10 to 20 percent from an item, but no longer. Many shoppers are looking for 50 percent off or more.

One relentless bargain hunter says she's able to buy gifts for 10 people with $300, but the real value of the merchandise totals $900. And a great sale is not just a pocketbook issue -- it apparently can provide great pleasure.

Mark Elwood, author of "Bargain Fever" writes that hormones in the brain activate when people see a sale. Spot a great discount? Elwood says the neurotransmitters in the brain signal reward and pleasure so people are chemically programmed to respond to sales.

Watch a CBS video about how shopping affects the brain below:

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