Black Friday

Black Friday sales surge ahead of new year price hikes

UK shoppers have rushed to buy Black Friday bargains, as estimates suggest sales are on course to beat last year.

Barclaycard said it had seen a record number of transactions, while Argos, John Lewis and Currys PC World reported a surge in orders.

Sales are likely to top £2bn, analysts say, as people hunt for discounts ahead of an expected rise in prices in 2017.

Meanwhile, in the US, where it all started, retailers are expecting 137 million shoppers over the whole period.

The boss of department store Macy’s said it had seen a strong start to the sales, although its website later suffered glitches.

Payment transactions were 6% higher than last year’s Black Friday, according to Barclaycard, which processes nearly half of the credit and debit card transactions in the UK.

Total spending was £2.9bn, although that also includes non-Black Friday specific purchases, a spokesperson said. The firm processes payments for customers of Barclaycard, Barclays and several major retailers.

The Nationwide Building Society said that by late afternoon purchases by its customers were up 13% on a year ago.

It said spending was about 39% higher than a normal Friday, while the discount retailing site TopCashback reported a 43% increase in spending over last year.

 

Source: BBC

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