Plenty of items actually work out pricier than buying from supermarkets – but many don’t have that luxury

While online retailers have transformed the landscape of American commerce, the largest three dollar-store chains are prospering offline, opening more than 1,800 stores last year.

The cost of a trip can be so negligible – the average customer drops $29 a month – and dollar stores have grown so ubiquitous, that it’s hard to countenance what economists confirm: visitors to dollar stores are often paying more than well-off consumers who shop elsewhere.

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Read More Dollar stores are thriving – but are they ripping off poor people?

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