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Retailers filled up towards the end of Thanksgiving day, as customers began the holiday shopping season. Many stores opened ...
hours before Black Friday officially arrived. (Nov. 23)
Tags:ap,Associated Press,amazon.com,black friday,Rasheed Ali,target corp.,toys r us
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SHOTLIST:WABC/COURTESY WABC-TVNEW YORK/NOV. 231. Shoppers crowded in store NYC Toys R US in Times Square, various shotsSTORYLINE:The nation's shoppers put the turkey down to take advantage of Thanksgiving deals. Stores typically open in the wee hours of the morning on the day after Thanksgiving that's named Black Friday because that's when stores traditionally turn a profit for the year. But Black Friday openings have crept earlier and earlier over the past few years. Now, stores from Target to Toys R Us opening their doors on Thanksgiving evening, hoping Americans will be willing to shop soon after they finish their pumpkin pie. Target Corp. opened its doors at 9 p.m. on the holiday, three hours earlier than last year. Sears, which didn't open on Thanksgiving last year, opened at 8 p.m. on Thursday through 10 p.m. on Black Friday. Toys R Us opened at 8 p.m., an hour earlier than last year. And stores such as Macy's Inc. opened at midnight on Black Friday. "I ate my turkey dinner and came right here. Then I'm going home and eating more," said Rasheed Ali, a 23-year-old student in New York City who bought a 50-inch Westinghouse TV for $349 and a Singer sewing machine for $50. Retailers were betting that the Thanksgiving openings would draw shoppers who prefer to head to stores after their turkey dinner rather than braving the crowds early the next morning. When Macy's opened its doors at midnight, for instance, 11,000 shoppers showed up. Overall, about 17 percent of shoppers plan to take advantage of Thanksgiving hours, according to an International Council of Shopping Centers-Goldman Sachs survey of 1,000 consumers. The earlier hours are an effort by stores to make shopping more convenient for Americans, who still face economic uncertainty. Many shoppers are worried about high unemployment and a package of tax increases and spending cuts known as the "fiscal cliff" that will take effect in January unless Congress passes a budget deal by then. At the same time, Americans have grown more comfortable shopping on websites such as Amazon.com, where they can get cheaper prices and buy from the comfort of their home or office cubicle.(****END****)