Historically, Black Friday is the day after Thanksgiving in America and the unofficial start of the Christmas shopping season. Thanksgiving parades often include an appearance from Santa to promote the idea that Santa has arrived or is just around the corner. Once Thanksgiving has finished, Christmas is the next major holiday to be celebrated so focus naturally shifts to buying Christmas presents.
There are a number of theories and rumours surrounding this day and how it got its name. The most widely recognised story is the notion of retail companies going "into the black" and out of the red when accounting records were kept by hand. The day after Thanksgiving is typically when crowds flock to the shops, giving retail stores the opportunity to make a profit.
However, the first recorded use of the term 'Black Friday' is attributed to the crash of the US gold market in 1869. Two Wall Street financiers attempted to work a scam together to buy as much of the nation's gold to drive the price sky-high with the plan to sell it on for huge profits. On Friday 24th September 1869 the scam unraveled sending the stock market into free-fall and making everyone from Wall Street barons to farmers bankrupt!
Another theory on how this day got its name goes back to the 1950s in Philadelphia. Police in the city described the chaos that happened the day after Thanksgiving as Black Friday as waves of shoppers descended to the retail stores and people flooded the city in advance of the big Army-Navy football game to be played the following day. The name stuck and began to spread across the country. Retailers found a way to reinvent Black Friday by turning it into something positive with the spin of 'red to black' as mentioned earlier.
Thanks to American-owned companies such as Amazon and Wal-Mart owned Asda, the bargain deals have crossed the Atlantic to give shoppers in the UK the opportunity to grab a deal just in time for Christmas. In just a few short years, Black Friday has escalated into one of the nation's busiest shopping days in store and online. a number of retailers have taken to extending their Black Friday events so that they last longer than the single day.
Traditionally, the best selling items on Black Friday are electrical goods, especially TVs, and toys. Despite this, eager shoppers still expect to receive special deals whatever they are in the market for including a new car. According to Kelley Blue Book new vehicle sales are expected to increase 4% year-over-year to a total of 1.37 million units in November 2016.
So whether you're looker for a new printer or a new Peugeot, you can expect to find some cut-price deals wherever you're shopping this Black Friday.