Outlet Store Bargains May Not Be as Good as They Seem

ABC News' Paula Faris investigates the potential value of discounts offered to outlet shoppers.
3:27 | 11/24/14

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Transcript for Outlet Store Bargains May Not Be as Good as They Seem
Test Text1 plain Back now at 7:40 with "Gma" investigates. Outlet stores today. Are you really getting the same items they're selling at their retail stores? Some lawmakers are calling for an investigation into it. Paula Faris has the details. Reporter: Deep discounts draw savvy shoppers. But do customers really mow what they're buying when they go to outlet stores? A lot of these goods sold in outlet stores are made for outlet stores and are of lesser quality. Reporter: Already, 11 class-action lawsuits, some claiming words like compared to and market price on tags are deseptember I have business practices. Some of the same items are not sold at stores. Now, several members of congress, including U.S. Senator Richard Blumenthal asking the ftc to open an investigation. What have they done? The ftc has, unfortunately, done nothing. Reporter: To see what we would find, my producer and I shop at an outlet mall in new Jersey. Could I are undreturn this to a regular Sak's? No, no, no no. Reporter: They say their store is a mix of regular items and outlet stores. Is this made just for the outlet or is this made for the regular store. No, wee don't -- we're studios. Reporter: They say they receive overflow from Neiman Marcus. And at gap. Can I return those at a regular store? No, it has to be gap factory. Reporter: We brought the items we brought to a textile professor at North Carolina state university. First, Sak's men's wool swerts. There are dimps in seaming and finishing details. You'll notice there a slight puckering here in the seam of the one from the outlet. The one from the regular store, just some of their finer details. Reporter: Check out where they're made. Reporter: The one from the outlet is made in China. The one there the regular store, Italy. Reporter: With the gap jeans? The labeling with the three squares denotes the outlet. Reporter: What about the compared to and market prices stores have on their tags? That's not clear from the price of what they're comparing it to. Reporter: We asked Nieman and Sak's to provide was the kompb rabl items. They declined. Sak's said Margaret price is determined through an aggregate market comparison. Off fit stands behind both the quality and pricing of the product. Gap is proud of the factory store collection that are specifically styled, designed, and produced for our shopper. Consumers should be told the truth. Reporter: For "Good morning America," Paula Faris, ABC news, New Jersey. Good to know what you're getting. Some perfectly great things out there. You want to know what you're buying. Mom always said, if it seems to do goo to be true, likely it is. That's the truth.

This transcript has been automatically generated and may not be 100% accurate.

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