There’s nothing more American than stampeding stores on Black Friday to save some money on your holiday shopping. But it’s meaningless.
Not meaningless in an existentialist way, though that too. Rather, meaningless as an economic indicator. See, Black Friday sales tell us nothing about overall holiday sales—and hence the state of consumers. You can see that in the chart below from Capital Economics (via Neil Irwin). It compares the change in sales during Thanksgiving week with the change in total sales from November to January. There’s not much of a relationship, and if anything, there’s a slightly negative correlation. In other words, better Black Fridays are associated with worse holiday sales seasons.
Read more. [Image: Reuters]
Cy Kuckenbaker, a film professor and filmmaker, layered five hours of footage shot at San Diego International Airport on November 23 between 10:30am and 3pm to make this crazy-looking video. He shares the details of how he created the video with the excellent photography blog Petapixel, explaining that the concept grew out of a still image by Ho-Yeol Ryu.