Business Economy USA

Record sales for the weekend of Thanksgiving in the U.S.

NEW YORK (Reuters) – Sales at U.S. retailers have reached record levels during the long weekend of Thanksgiving, marking the start of the holiday season and New Year, buyers are coming in numbers to take advantage the early opening of shops and attractive promotions.

These sales were up 16.4% over the same period a year earlier to 52.4 billion (39.25 billion euros), according to data released Sunday by the National Federation of the distribution (NRF).

A total of 226 million people traveled between Thursday and Sunday in stores or on online sales sites. This is also an unprecedented level, compared with 212 million last year.

Among the big winners of the weekend appears Best Buy, one of the stores that opened its doors at midnight on the night of Thanksgiving. Unlike 2010, when the group had relied on sales of 3D TVs, Best Buy has focused on products promotions wider audience this year.

The figures in this weekend surprised analysts, who expected to see limited sales in the United States by an unemployment rate of 9% of pump prices high and fears about the European Debt Crisis .

“One swallow does not make the holiday season,” warns Craig Johnson, president of the consulting firm Customer Growth Partners, fearing trouble ahead.

The National Federation of the distribution anticipates an increase in sales slowed to 2.8% for the period November to December, against 5.2% over the same period last year.

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