How Hard Should Amazon Swing?

Holiday sales and customer satisfaction are both up. Too bad the push for profitability is crimping growth

Deena Maerowitz, a busy Washington lawyer, had no doubts about where to do much of her holiday shopping this year. When it came to buying gifts, including two Olivia the pig children's books, a bearded-collie calendar, Star Wars games, and two Angel Barbies, she went straight to Amazon.com. A few clicks, and $150 worth of presents were on their way -- no wrapping or waiting in line at the post office required. "I had a great experience with Amazon," she says.

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