Retailers offered steep discounts on Black Friday to lure shoppers into stores as online shopping continues to grow. Shartia Brantley reports.
The Black Friday sales creep continued as crowds formed outside of retailers such as Macy's on Thanksgiving Day to start the holiday shopping season. The National Retail Federation projects 2015 holiday sales, which includes November and December, will increase by 3.7 percent to $630.5 billion. However, warmer weather has led to an inventory glut in apparel. Macy's CEO Terry Lundgren: (SOUNDBITE) TERRY LUNDGREN, CEO, MACY'S, (ENGLISH) SAYING: "Definitely, there's too much inventory for all retailers, who are selling coats, boots, comforters, scarves, gloves, all of those categories in the Northeast and Mid-Atlantic because the weather, frankly, has been quite warm relative to last year." But despite this, Lundgren says Macy's is on track to have its largest volume day of the year from 6 p.m. on Thanksgiving Day until 6 p.m. on Black Friday. Overall, Black Friday weekend should be a success for retailers, says Mary Epner Retail Analysis' Mary Epner. (SOUNDBITE) MARY EPNER, PRINCIPAL, MARY EPNER RETAIL ANALYSIS, (ENGLISH) SAYING: "So far, it's good. However, I say that with a caveat. There are categories that are outstanding. Doorbusters have been set up really well for a lot of stores, particularly in electronics. So those actually sold out last night believe it or not. Secondly apparel sales will probably be very good with the exception of outer wear." And toys and themed merchandise from the upcoming movie - Star Wars: The Force Awakens - lured consumers into stores such as Toys R Us. Online sales were strong on Thanksgiving and Black Friday and the shopping frenzy is expected to continue through Cyber Monday.