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Given all of the economic doom and gloom that’s been dished out over the past several months, I fully expected Black Friday to be a bust. But guess what? According to data from ShopperTrak, Black Friday retail sales increased 3% over last year’s levels. While this was the smallest year-over-year gain since 2005, it was still a gain.
This increase seems particularly significant given that a recent Gallup poll indicated that shoppers expected to spend 29% less this year. Of course, there are no guarantees that a better than expected Black Friday will translate into a strong holiday shopping season overall. All of this begs the question…
Is the economy really doing better than we’ve been led to believe? Or are people simply blowing their cash early in search of the hottest deals, only to tighten their belts as Christmas draws nearer. Another factor to consider is that there are only 27 shopping days between Black Friday and Christmas this year compared to 32 in 2007. Perhaps the shorter shopping season has kicked shoppers into high gear.
What about you?
Are you cutting back this year? Or is it business as usual?
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