The numbers are in, and
was a booming success. Again.
Here are some of the key statistics - courtesy of the National
Retail Federation - from yet another record-breaking start to the
holiday shopping season:
- $59 billion was spent over the four-day weekend, from
Thanksgiving to Sunday - a 13% improvement over last year.
- Online sales reached $1 billion for the first time in
history - and that was before today's traditional Internet
shopping holiday, Cyber Monday.
- Between stores and websites, there were 249 million
shoppers over the weekend - up 9.2% from last year.
- The average holiday shopper spent $423 over the weekend, up
from $398 in 2011.
All of that is good news for a struggling economy on the brink
of a "fiscal cliff". Black Friday was particularly good to the
companies that were able to reach shoppers both online and in
brick and mortar stores.
Here are three companies that did it best. All ranked among
the most visited web sites over the Black Friday weekend. Not
coincidentally, all three have seen their stocks rise sharply
since Friday morning:
Amazon is the one company on this list that doesn't have its
own brick and mortar presence. But because the online retailer
was the weekend's most visited site, it basically didn't
matter. Shares of Amazon have climbed nearly 2% since Friday
morning to reach their highest level in a month.
Best Buy (
This struggling big-box retailer isn't dead yet, as evidenced
by its thriving online sales on Black Friday. Best Buy's big
weekend pushed shares of its beaten-down stock up 5%
Don't look now, but shares of the world's largest company are
making a huge comeback. After falling nearly $200 in two
months, the stock has bounced back with authority over the last
10 days - boosted by its 5% gains since Friday's market open.
Purchases of mobile devices - a space Apple dominates -
accounted for 16% of all online transactions, resulting in a
monster weekend for Apple.