Time > Day > USA > Thanksgiving
> Black Friday, Cyber
The Buffalo News
18 November 2010
The successful purchase from a Target store in Los Angeles of
a 55in TV
Photograph: Mark Ralston/AFP/Getty
Black Friday bargain-hunters hit the shops – in pictures
Friday 27 November 2015
the day after Thanksgiving
the first official day
of the U.S. holiday
A carnival of capitalism,
is the day after Thanksgiving,
when retailers across the country
open before dawn
and dangle deep discounts
to lure customers out of bed.
even show up in pajamas.
The name itself
is a reference to profit,
because retailers historically
"moved into the black,"
or became profitable for the year,
on this day.
cartoons > Cagle > Black Friday 2013
cartoons > Cagle > Holiday Shopping 2011 > Black and blue Friday
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Cyber Monday, the first Monday after
story/story.php?storyId=248243390 - December 2, 2013
Cyber Monday UK
The Transformation of Black Friday
November 23, 2013
The New York Times
By HILARY STOUT
The word “black” in front of a day of the week has almost
never meant anything good.
Black Monday was the sell-off the day before the stock market crash of 1929,
Black Tuesday. Black Wednesday was used to refer to a day of widespread air
traffic snarls in 1954 as well as the day the British government was forced to
withdraw a battered pound from the European Exchange Rate Mechanism in 1992.
Black Thursday has variously been used for days of devastating brush fires,
bombings and athletic defeats, among other unpleasantness.
So how is it that the term Black Friday has now come almost universally to
denote joyous commercial excess, stupendous deals and big profits as the day
when everyone heads out to shop for the holidays the day after Thanksgiving?
It wasn’t always this way. The New York Times first used the term Black Friday
in an article in 1870 to refer to the day the gold market collapsed in September
Ben Zimmer, executive producer of Vocabulary.com, who has researched and written
about the term, says its association with shopping the day after Thanksgiving
began in Philadelphia in the 1960s — and even then the reference wasn’t
positive. The local police took to calling the day after Thanksgiving Black
Friday because they had to deal with bad traffic and other miseries connected to
the throngs of shoppers heading for the stores that day.
Needless to say, that use didn’t sit well with local retailers. They tried,
according to Mr. Zimmer, to give the day a more positive name: Big Friday. That
did not take, but eventually retailers — in Philadelphia and beyond — managed to
spin a new connotation: The day retailer’s books went from red ink to black.
Most consumers probably don’t know — and don’t care — about any of this. All
they want are deals.
But the rebranding of Black Friday has been so successful that others have tried
to spread the wealth across other days of the week as the holiday shopping
season grows ever more competitive. In 2005, Cyber Monday was introduced as the
day online retailers offered big savings to holiday shoppers. A few years ago,
American Express came up with “Small Business Saturday” to encourage people to
shop (presumably with their AmEx cards) at independent local businesses the day
after Black Friday.
And as retailers begin their holiday promotions earlier and earlier, there have
even been efforts to change the name of the day before Black Friday to Gray,
Brown, even Black Thursday.
But for most people it will still forever be Thanksgiving.
The Transformation of Black Friday,
Weekend, at Least,
Retailers See Record Numbers
The New York Times
By STEPHANIE CLIFFORD
aggressive promotions from retailers, American consumers opened their wallets
over the holiday weekend in a way they had not since before the recession,
setting records in sales and traffic.
The National Retail Federation said Sunday that spending per shopper surged 9.1
percent over last year — the biggest increase since 2006 — to an average of
almost $400 a customer. In all, 6.6 percent more shoppers visited stores on the
Thanksgiving weekend than last year.
“American consumers have been taking a deep breath and making a decision that
it’s O.K. to go shopping again,” despite the high unemployment rate and other
signs of caution, said Ellen Davis, vice president at the National Retail
Numbers from ShopperTrak, a consumer research service, showed equally strong
results, with in-store sales on Friday rising by 6.6 percent over last year’s
Thanksgiving Friday to $11.4 billion.
Yet there were signs the gains might not last. Analysts said that traffic to
stores seemed to slow through the weekend, suggesting that the big start to the
holiday season might peter out over time. And shoppers were using credit cards
in large numbers, mall owners and analysts said, signaling that consumers were
willing to sacrifice savings more than last year, when they paid with cash more
“With consumers, it’s emotional, so they might feel they need Christmas this
year,” said Margaret Taylor, vice president and senior credit officer in the
corporate finance group at Moody’s Investors Service. “They could be willing to
take on more credit.”
Mark Vitner, a senior economist at Wells Fargo Securities, said in a note to
clients that he expected that “consumers will dig into savings” or “temporarily
tack on a little more debt” during the holidays.
Retailers hardly objected. Total spending, including online sales, reached an
estimated $52.4 billion Thursday through Sunday, the National Retail Federation
said. About 35 percent of that total was spent online, slightly higher than last
year, the federation said, suggesting that online retailers’ attempts to attract
in-store shoppers worked well.
Bill Martin, founder of ShopperTrak, noted that the day after Thanksgiving,
usually the year’s biggest sales day, is “one day in a 60-day holiday season.”
Still, he said, “what we do know is without a strong start to the season it’s
pretty hard to have a good season.”
Given the tight budgets of customers, major retailers aggressively wooed
shoppers, moving back opening hours to midnight on Thanksgiving or earlier. It
seems to have worked, attracting more shoppers and giving them more hours on
Friday to spend.
Almost a quarter of people who went shopping the Friday after Thanksgiving were
in stores by midnight Thursday, the federation found. Among 18- to 34-year-olds
who went shopping, that percentage was higher — 36.7 percent — than it was among
35- to 54-year-olds, of whom 23.5 percent were in stores by midnight.
“Early Black Friday openings and Thanksgiving-night openings are simply to get a
larger share of the customer’s wallet,” Ms. Davis said, adding that research
showed that customers tend to spend more at their first stop than at subsequent
Though the longer Friday hours helped bump up sales, some analysts said they
might have taken away from steady shopping through the weekend.
“Our perspective is that Black Friday peaked early this year and then lost some
of its luster,” said Alison Jatlow Levy, a retail strategist at the consulting
firm Kurt Salmon. On Saturday, “the malls felt like an average busy Saturday,
but not like a Black Friday extravaganza.”
At the midnight opening of Macy’s Herald Square on Thanksgiving, about 9,000
customers were in line, up from 7,000 last year. Most looked quite young, many
saying they had come for the late-night spectacle rather than for specific
Kester Richards, 18, was at the front of the line and said he had waited four
hours. He said he was a regular Macy’s shopper and was looking for Ralph Lauren
clothes, but had never been to Black Friday before.
Kyun Il Bae, 21, and In Jung Choi, 21, South Korean students studying in New
York State, said they had heard about the event and wanted to see what it was
like. “I just like the atmosphere,” Mr. Bae said. “It’s a popular place, and I
heard this is crazy.” Later, in the store, Mr. Bae did not seem as enthusiastic.
He shrugged when asked if he had found any good deals, and looked more exhausted
The midnight openings also may have contributed to the unusually high number of
men who were in stores. More men than women shopped throughout the weekend, and
they spent more per person, according to the retail federation.
“Men really aren’t willing to pull themselves out of bed at 4 a.m. for a
bargain, but they will go” late at night, Ms. Davis said. “Men are increasingly
budget-focused, and like the idea of looking for good deals.”
Stores selling to people of different income levels chose different tactics on
Friday, with many of the low- and middle-income retailers opening early with
“door-buster” discounts, and the luxury stores moving back their opening times
by just an hour or two. Still, Mr. Martin said, sales “were pretty good across
all manner of retailers.”
According to the federation, department stores and discounters were the most
popular destinations over the weekend, followed by electronics stores.
Shoppers interviewed Thursday night and Friday sounded as if they were on tight
budgets, and that drove them to stores.
Amanda Ponce, 40, stood outside a Target in downtown Chicago, an Xbox 360 for
her 8-year-old daughter on her shopping list. At $139.99, marked down from
$199.99, the savings were crucial this year, she said, since she will be buying
“We’ve had a lot harder time living the same lifestyle that we lived,” she said,
saying that her husband, a marketing consultant, had been taking on extra work.
“We’re focusing more on specifically what she wants instead of an abundance of
gifts. Things she’ll actually use and play with.”
At a J. C. Penney in Rancho Cucamonga, Calif., Maria Aguilar was not buying
presents — she had come in for deals on a coffeepot and a griddle.
“We are definitely cutting back,” said Ms. Aguilar, 45, an instructional
assistant from Norco, Calif. She said that this year, her family was buying
gifts for “just the little ones, just the children.”
Fairley Raney and Steven Yaccino
For a Weekend, at Least, Retailers See Record Numbers,
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