This is the most important day of the year for the retail sector: it could be the difference between having a good year and marginal one.
I have heard some retail pundits say this Friday could generate as much as 30% of the total year’s sales—on just this one day.
Why “Black” Friday? The “black” refers to the fact that it could potentially turn a year of losses into a year of profits based on this day’s sales.
This is why the retail sector is pumped to go.
We have already heard about an early start to Black Friday with some retailers opening prior to the traditional midnight, which of course entails shopping on Thanksgiving Day.
The battle for your dollars is competitive. Merchants need to try to get a leg up on their rivals in the retail sector in whatever way they can, whether it means earlier and longer hours or heavy discounting.
Retailers will likely have to initiate deep discounting to win your wallet.
And the trip to the mall or stores will be made easier this year, given the major decline in gasoline prices at the pumps.
Money saved here could help drive consumer sentiment.
If you want evidence on how important Black Friday is to retailers, take a look at the facts:
- About 92.1 million shoppers were out at the stores on Black Friday in 2013
- On the weekend, a whopping 248.7 million shoppers were at the stores and online
- Cyber Monday is becoming an increasingly major shopping day for online consumers and retailers; companies such as Amazon.com, Inc. (NASDAQ:AMZN) will be extremely busy on this day
Stocks to Watch This Thanksgiving
In addition to online retailers, I also like some of the companies towards the luxury brand stocks, including my favorites: Michael Kors Holdings Limited (NYSE:KORS) in the apparel and handbag area, and Tiffany & Co. (NYSE:TIF) in jewelry.
On the contrarian end of the retail investing spectrum, I like Vera Bradley, Inc. (NASDAQ:VRA) and Kate Spade & Company (NYSE:KATE).
While it’s unknown exactly how Black Friday will turn out, recent encouraging news from several players in the retail sector offers some optimism.
Companies reporting good news include Wal-Mart Stores Inc. (NYSE:WMT), Target Corporation (NYSE:TGT), Macy’s, Inc. (NYSE:M), The Home Depot, Inc. (NYSE:HD), and Lowes Companies, Inc. (NYSE:LOW).
In my view, we could see better numbers this year in the retail sector, given the improvement in the jobs market, housing sector, and overall consumer confidence.
Consumers may be anxious to spend but if the bargains are there, we could see a massive Friday.
This article is brought to you courtesy of George Leong.