Barnes & Noble's Lights May Be Flickering

If you're like me or most of the people I know, it's probably been a good while since you've actually bought music in the CD format or watched a movie on a DVD. I either get digital downloads through Apple's (AAPL) iTunes or stream programming through Netflix (NFLX), Amazon's (AMZN) Prime service or through Spotify. I'm sure popular stocking stuffers this holiday season will include gift cards from a number of those companies, as well as Starbucks (SBUX), which also a great app that allows you to send virtual presents to friends and family. Not quite the reason to buy Starbucks shares -- the multiyear drop in coffee prices has been one of several key drivers to that run in the stock over the last year.

While many retailers are embracing online shopping -- Macy's (M) has done a stellar job, and even TJX (TJX) is embracing it this year -- there are still what I call commodity retailers that are having a tough time in the increasingly digital world. There's been a lot of talk about "showrooming" at Best Buy (BBY) and at other purveyors of consumer electronics -- customers visiting the store and buying online --  but the other industry that is suffering is publishing. We've all heard tales of newspapers shutting operations and using paywalls where possible. Magazines such as Newsweek have shifted to online or digital-only editions. ...382 more words left in this article. To read them, just click below and try Real Money FREE for 14 days.

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