This Year's Hot Toys Determined Last Year

December 12, 2012 Updated Dec 12, 2012 at 2:31 PM EDT

By Elizabeth Carey

December 12, 2012 Updated Dec 12, 2012 at 2:31 PM EDT

The hot toys that shoppers are scrambling for were actually determined long ago. A report in this week's Business First shows how workers at Fisher-Price Inc. knew last year what those hot toys were going to be.

Toy researchers presented this year's hot toys to retailers in September 2011 based on projections from designers.

A hot concept can be found with this year's Cruise and Groove Ballapalooza by Fisher-Price. It is designed to help babies crawl and walk, based on research showing how babies can detect a beat in music..

From Goo Goo Ga Ga to Bah Humbug. The National Retail Federaion estimates return fraud will cost retailers $8.9 billion this year. $2.9 billion of that will be during the holiday season.

Retailers estimate almost five percent of holiday returns are fraudulent. Nearly 100% of retailers tell the NRF they've received returns of stolen merchandise. About 84% say customers buy goods with stolen tender and return them. 81% report employee fraud. About 65% report wardrobing: where consumers return used goods. And about 46% report the use of fake receipts, especially e-receipts.

This affects innocent consumers because companies try to prevent fraud. That means shorter return windows and limitations on returns for the average consumer.