Americans eager to nab holiday discounts lined up at stores on Black Friday, putting what in recent years has been the busiest shopping day of the year on track for record sales.
Black Friday sales in stores and online were up 12% by mid-morning, according to Mastercard SpendingPulse, which tracks spending broadly across cards and cash. By noon Eastern time, shoppers had spent a total of $5.8 billion — up 7% compared to the same period last year, data from the software company Salesforce shows.
“Retail spending has been on the rise throughout the day,” Steve Sadove, senior advisor for Mastercard and former CEO or department store chain Saks, said in a report. “As of 3 p.m. today, Mastercard SpendingPulse reports that total retail sales are up nearly 30% compared to last year, with apparel and department store sales leading the way.”
Consumers, who spent $5.1 billion on Thanksgiving Day, are expected to shell out between $8.8 billion and $9.6 billion on Friday, according to Adobe Digital Insights. The market research firm forecasts that online sales in November and December will hit a record $207 billion, which would mark a 10% increase over last year.
According to the National Retail Federation, more than 108 million people are expected to shop at stores or online on Black Friday.
The final spending tally for Black Friday will offer a major hint if momentum that started building earlier in the season will hold throughout the entire Thanksgiving…