Black Friday (Getty Images)
As the sales continue to roll in for Cyber Monday, the National Retail Federation is calling Black Friday a success. They report 141 million unique shoppers hit stores from Thursday through Monday. That's up from 139 million over the same period last year.
Although most Americans said they did not want stores open for business Thanksgiving Day, it was a success for retailers. One-quarter of holiday shoppers were in stores by 8 p.m. Thanksgiving night. Thursday sales were up 27% over last year.
Steep discounts attributed to a lower average spending this year. Shoppers spent an average $407.02 this year compared to $423.55 last year.
"Cold weather, unique promotions and unbeatable prices put millions of Americans in the mood to shop for holiday gifts this weekend," said NRF President and CEO Matthew Shay. "Retailers' late night and early morning promotions struck just the right chord for those hoping to kick off the holiday shopping season with friends and family."
The must-have item at Wal-Mart on Black Friday wasn't a big-screen TV or the latest gaming system. It was towels. Wal-Mart sold 2.8 million 29 cent towels. What was your best buy over the busy holiday weekend?