Shop Talk

Black Friday Bucks Trend

After all the gloomy talk, on Black Friday, the biggest day in the year for the retail industry, we shopped even more than last year. Sales rose 3 percent to $10.6 billion, up from last year’s $10.3 billion, according to preliminary figures released by ShopperTrak RCT Corp., a Chicago-based research firm that tracks sales at more than 50,000 retail outlets “It's truly amazing when you think about all the news that led into the holiday season," said ShopperTrak’s Bill Martin. “It certainly appears that consumers are willing to spend more than most expected.” The trend was nationwide. Sales in the South were up 3.4 percent from last year, up 2.6 percent in the Northeast, up 3 percent in the Midwest and up 2.7 percent in the West. J.C. Penney, however, were keeping quiet about their Black Friday figures. “In light of the challenging and volatile economic climate, and shifts in this year's retail calendar, we don't believe that reporting sales data for any one day (or weekend), including Black Friday, would provide a meaningful barometer of our business," the store declared.