AT THE SOUND OF THE BEEP.....

Los Angeles area residents buy far more than their share of phone answering machines--70% more than the national average--but less than the national average of cordless phones, according to a survey contrasting buying habits in three metropolitan areas.

The survey asked consumers if they had ever bought various products, then ranked the cities on an index based on a national average of 100.

NATIONAL AVERAGE PHONE ANSWERING MACHINES

Greater LA: 170

Greater NY: 103

Greater Chicago: 133

CAR PHONES

Greater LA: 104

Greater NY: 108

Greater Chicago: 102

CORDLESS PHONES

Greater LA: 85

Greater NY: 75

Greater Chicago: 141

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