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Black Friday - Who came up with that name?

All week (and a little before) people were talking about 'Black Friday'.  Why is the day after Thanksgiving called Black Friday?  I realize its a term that has been used for years.  I also realize that it is the Friday that follows Thanksgiving.

This 'Black Friday' can be as early as November 23rd or as late as November 29th.  But if you think about it... its a day when most people take off of work and/or your office is closed so you get to enjoy the day off.  Perhaps you are crazy enough to go shopping with the gazilions of other people who have today off.  That's when it hit me.  This term MUST have been created by someone who has to work today.  And not just any worker... they must have worked at a retailers.  It would not make sense for the term to be started by a Real Estate Agent.  As a matter of fact, it would be great for someone to be off of work and contact a local Realtor to shop for homes.

So.. I took the time to do a little research on the term itself.  Apparently it originated in Philadelphia in reference to the heavy traffic on that day.  This is a day where retailers are 'in the black' for profits, instead of in the red.  It has always been believed that Black Friday was the busiest shopping day of the year.  In fact, over the past 10 years, Black Friday has only been the TOP shopping day for 2 of those years.  Typically, the busiest shopping day of the season is the Saturday prior to Christmas.

Perhaps you learned something new today about Black Friday... or perhaps I'm a little slow on the information.... either way, I learned something new.



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Comment balloon 13 commentsJohn Cannata • November 28 2008 05:32PM


John:  Yep.  It's the day most retailers actually turn a profit for the year.  Let's hope our local economies get a boost from today's shopping. 

Posted by Chris Ann Cleland, Associate Broker, Bristow, VA (Long and Foster REALTORS®, Gainesville, VA) over 10 years ago

This term best applies to me then. I got to work while others can shop. Hmmmmm.... got to think about this one. Nope. I'm glad I got a chance to  make money instead of spending it. So Black Friday means good for me.

\\==][-]- This means Happy Thanksgiving from a 14-month old who doesnt ktnow his ABCs yet

Posted by Loreena and Michael Yeo, Real Estate Agents (3:16 team REALTY ~ Locally-owned Prosper TX Real Estate Co.) over 10 years ago

Hi John,

Did you have a nice Thanksgiving Day? Yeah, this day is supposed to help retailers make a profitable year but that is not always the case or the profit is not that huge.

Posted by Angelia Garcia (Pure Realtors) over 10 years ago

John, I thought the term had something to do with actually making some money since it was black instead of red but I did not know the rest.  I WAS NOT one of those out there; I would rather go to the dentist!!

Posted by Marchel Peterson, Spring TX Real Estate E-Pro (Results Realty) over 10 years ago

Hi John, I just learned something new!  I had a feeling it meant something about the money not being in the red.  Thanks for the lesson ;).  KM

Posted by Kristin Moran, San Antonio,TX - Real Estate - 210-313-7397 (Owner - RE/MAX Access - over 10 years ago

I knew t was because of the "profits"/black not "losses"/red - but didn't know this much about it. Thanks for the lesson John.

Posted by Karen Otto, Plano Home Staging, Dallas Home Staging, (Home Star Staging) over 10 years ago

John I had heard this and it seems so evil. Retailers prefer a black Friday to a red Friday by all means...

Posted by Paul S. Henderson, REALTOR®, CRS, Tacoma Washington Agent/Broker & Market Authority! (RE/MAX Northwest.) over 10 years ago

Chris - It was news to me.  I have always looked at it as a negative comment.  It makes sense now.

Loreena - Its always better to make money than to spend it.  Well... sometimes its good to spend, but as long as you go in order (step 1 make money... step 2 spend money).

Angelia - I had a very nice Thanksgiving.  Thank you for asking.  I hope that you did as well.  Any traveling?  I was lucky enough to stick around town and go to my sister-in-laws.  Food was great.

Marchel - Sorry you had the dentist appointment.. unless it was the routine check-up, then its not bad.  I didnt shop either.  No reason to get into the crowd this early into the xmas season.

Kristin - Im glad that someone besides me learned something new.  I guess Im just slow with the information or never really thought about it... yeah, I'll go with that.  :-)

Karen - You are very welcome.  Looks like a hand full of us learned something today.

Paul - Welcome back home.  I hope you enjoyed your trip.

Posted by John Cannata, Texas Home Mortgage - Purchase or Refinance (214-728-0449 over 10 years ago

You never stop learning !! Great little post !!

Posted by Carl Stars (Sutton Group About Town Realty ) over 10 years ago

I thought Black Friday meant..... yeah, profits.

Posted by Greg Nino, Houston, Texas (RE/MAX Compass, formerly RE/MAX WHP) over 10 years ago

Thanks Carl.  Glad I shared something new with you.

LOL Greg.  It's safe to share your thoughts here.

Posted by John Cannata, Texas Home Mortgage - Purchase or Refinance (214-728-0449 over 10 years ago

i bought nothing.... too cold

Posted by Geoffrey Davis (BANK of the OZARKS) over 10 years ago

It was warmer on that day than it is today Geoff.  Today is a high if 52

Posted by John Cannata, Texas Home Mortgage - Purchase or Refinance (214-728-0449 over 10 years ago