Wal-Mart goof: Computer monitors for $9

The retailer erroneously gave shoppers a great deal Wednesday, leading to discounts of as much as 95%.

By MSN Money Partner Nov 6, 2013 1:06PM

The Wal-Mart Store web site © Scott Olson/Getty ImagesFox BusinessUpdated 12:45 p.m. ET

By Adam Samson


Everyone knows Wal-Mart (WMT) for its discount goods, but this deal might be a bit too sweet. The world's largest retailer erroneously priced a handful of computer monitors at a heavy discount online Wednesday morning.


Monitors ranging from a high-definition, 24-inch product by Viewsonic to a 20-inch version made by Hewlett-Packard (HPQ) were made available at the bargain price of $8.85.

The suggested retail price of those two monitors are $199.99 and $185, respectively, although retailers often offer them at discounts.


Many of the monitors were sold out by 8 a.m. ET, although the prices persisted on Walmart.com.

Wal-Mart says that a technical error caused a number of products to be priced absurdly low or high on its website earlier Wednesday. The company says it is working to resolve the issue and that the site may have intermittent problems with availability until then.

A spokesperson declined to specify whether an error was made, but said the tech goodies were unavailable in the retailer's brick-and-mortar stores and are "no longer available" online. She also couldn't immediately comment on whether people who swooped in on the pre-holiday snafu would be able to buy the monitors at the specified prices.


These sort of glitches are certainly not unheard of in the technology realm. In September, United Airlines (UAL) accidentally offered some flights at $0. That month, Abercrombie and Fitch's (ANF) Hollister brand mistakenly offered bras for free.


This holiday season is expected to be a tough one for retailers. Indeed, analysts at Morgan Stanley (MS) are calling for the worst holiday selling season since 2008. The New York investment bank sees retailers offering the deepest discounts since '08 as well.


"With six fewer shopping days between Thanksgiving and Christmas, retailers could push the promotional 'panic button' earlier than needed, putting margins at risk," the analysts, led by Kimberly Greenberger, wrote.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.


More from Fox Business

Totally fed up with Walmart. Raised prices, cut back on quality. I am afraid to buy produce,especially
ones coming from other countries. Same goes for meats. Can't be trusted. As for bakery items, I quit buying them. To raise the price by a dollar, cut back on size, and quality. You can't fool the daily shoppers. I've taken my business and money elsewhere.


with retailers panicking about margins and $80,000 plus workers lucky if they find a job paying $10,000 a year (bases upon 29 hours a week minimum wage) and Large Company Executives getting on average $200,000,000 a year which says the economy is growing again


but the economy is only growing for the top 1 percenters


pretty much America is doomed



Nov 6, 2013 3:34PM
I just sent Wal-Mart a nasty note. They had a 50" HDTV listed at a retail price of $999.95 but you had to create an account and put it in a basket to see the price so low they couldn't advertise it. After creating an account, putting it in a shopping cart to see this tremendous price it was $998.95 or a $1 discount. I wasn't pleased.
Nov 6, 2013 4:08PM
Slowly but surely Walmart's once reputable standing is being damaged.  While they still offer great deals in many areas, they're being overshadowed by these senseless and underhanded tactics.  The general public has no patience for this level of blatant deception, there are too many other places to shop especially with the internet.  I have noticed their once "crowded at all times" store local to me is about 50% of what it used to be.  You reap what you sow. 
Nov 6, 2013 2:56PM
Walmart "errors" have happened to me twice. Items that I purchased were not delivered as described. Many emails never resolved the problem. I ended up having to pay return postage on the items in order to get a refund. No more Walmart.com shopping for me. I let all my friends know about these errors and I hope this message reaches even more people.
Nov 6, 2013 4:33PM
there is another problem going on at walmart, I use coupons that walmart has on there website, you select the ones you want and print, the problem lies in that I buy he product, go thru the line and the clerk scans coupons, but it doesn't take off the amount, she puts coupons in drawer and doesn't say anything, this has happened  3 or 4 time with 1.00 to 1.50 coupons, the last time I called the store, because they turn those coupons in to the manufacturer for reimbursement of the coupon amount and a handling fee, so you are paying full price, walmart is getting the coupon price plus handling , I know this doesn't sound like a lot, but think about it hundreds of thousands of people use coupons, if walmart is getting 1.00 coupon credit plus handling that could be hundreds of thousands of dollars in a year. sounds like someone came up with a way of making a lot of money.
Nov 6, 2013 4:22PM
History repeats itself. The end of any Empire is in its creation. Bigger it gets quicker it self destructs.
In the past it was applicable only to countries. Now it's applicable to corporations and financial institutions.
Nov 6, 2013 2:23PM

Every website I've ever seen makes the (unclear, small print) declaration that "printing" errors in price, description, or anything else carry no weight.


I've known of web retailers charging the crazy low price, catching their error, then charging the customer's card again to bring the price up to snuff; and emailing the customer to advise if they don't want the item at the actual lo-lo price to cancel the order, etc, etc.

Nov 6, 2013 4:12PM
Bought 2 Tracfones from WalMart online at a very low price........picked up in store,
no problem till I tried to activate them........couldn't, Tracfone said they had no record
of those phones being sold......................after several calls, emails, etc I took
them to the store and got a refund.
Found out the phones were never scanned by the warehouse or the store and the
store refused to scan them because they didn't sell them to me!
I'm not likely to buy online from them again.

Nov 6, 2013 5:39PM
Once upon a time I ordered a canopy bed for my daughter from Walmart.  It arrived late for her birthday and I wanted to return it because I had gone someplace else to buy it.  Well I called customer service and they sent me another one!  Called them again and was told the carrier would be there to pick them up.....lol they would only take one!  So I packed up the bed which was heavy and large and took it to the store...no go because they wouldnt take it either.  I had one refund on my card and then called customer service again to get the bed back to them and guess what......they sent another, and a refund!  3 beds and one refund later, I gave up and put them on the lawn told, them come get them before someone else does. 
I went to pickup my drugs and they wanted the full price which I cannot afford. They said three times a year they change their drug prices on their co-pay list. I've been with them four three years but no more. I now get my drugs at Fred Meyer only one is full price but I get my rewards. To hell with walmart.
Nov 6, 2013 5:52PM
I miss the 'old' Walmart, when Sam would buy his own stuff, at his store.
Nov 6, 2013 4:15PM

Why have walmart articles been popping up so much lately?

I'm STILL not going there for anything Christmas,or most other stuff for that matter.

One thing which I did find a few years ago was a cheap,store brand razor blade refill.

Actually Wilkinson.

Why do I buy it? It was the only one stating "Made In America."

The rest,even name brands,have X made here,Y made there,assembled in ______.

I swore about 10 years ago that I could have made a killing by starting a business selling "Made In America" stickers.

Nov 6, 2013 5:53PM
how come this never happens to me? DAMN!
Nov 6, 2013 3:50PM
What I wanted to buy for almost a year is out of stock...1 year just say we don't carry this item anymore.
Nov 6, 2013 5:43PM
I love living in NYC for one reason NO F'IN Wally Mart
Nov 6, 2013 4:56PM
Bentonville.....hahahahahahahahaha  what a group of idiots.  Maybe they are on Target's payroll.  lol
Nov 6, 2013 7:04PM
The Sam Walton concept of Walmart  was a great store,  Sam died and his sons and daughters turned it into one huge money hungry monster with no concern for its employees or customers.  The Walton "family" worshiped money.......Mr. Sam Walton is spinning in his grave
Nov 6, 2013 7:11PM
I hope the Walton family can get past this loss without any psychological problems. We all know there will not be any financial loss for them
They will probably just cut hours for 400,000 workers to make up for the loss. I am sure the workers will understand.
Merry Christmas.
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