Retailers see only a little more green on Black Friday

Sales on the day after Thanksgiving were up just 0.5% from a year earlier, ShopperTrak says. A trade group says 195 million Americans went shopping over the weekend, but average spending falls 7.9%.

Despite huge crowds fueled by heavy discounts, shoppers spent less on average on Black Friday and weren’t able to give retailers the big boost they were hoping for.

Sales on the day after Thanksgiving rose just 0.5% to $10.66 billion, according to ShopperTrak RCT Corp., a research firm that monitors sales at more than 50,000 stores. That compared with a 3% year-over-year Black Friday increase in 2008 and an 8.3% surge in 2007.

“It’s a positive sign that we had an increase in sales, but the numbers certainly don’t indicate that those will be sustained,” said Britt Beemer, chairman of consumer behavior firm America’s Research Group.

Nationwide, 195 million shoppers visited stores and websites over the four-day weekend, up from 172 million last year, the National Retail Federation said Sunday.

But average spending fell 7.9%, to $343.31 per person, from $372.57 a year ago. Total spending reached an estimated $41.2 billion.

LA Times

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