THE BRONX - Some local toy stores are already placing holiday items on sale.

According to Jose Nieves, a Toys ?R? Us employee, parents typically try not to skimp on holiday gifts for their children. But amid a financial meltdown, local residents say they are taking advantage of October sales and shopping early to get more bang for their scarce bucks.

?Everything?s gone up, so you ? just look for the sales, the specials,? shopper Jessica Cruz says.

Toy store employees recommend keeping an eye out for weekly ads and asking representatives about good deals for the age range of the gift recipients.