This post is important enough as a consumer shopping tip that I am posting it at both of my blogs ( and I’m sure that more than a few retailers are not happy with the Wall Street Journal for publishing the story.

Black Friday has traditionally been the start of the holiday shopping season. It is the day after Thanksgiving, when virtually everyone (except for retail employees and crucial services workers) is home and available to shop. So, in the build up to Black Friday, many retailers advertise heavily and run special sales.

The retailer’s major goal for Black Friday is to encourage shoppers who are bargain hunting to buy non-sale items as well. That’s where the profits are.

Over the years, we (consumers) have been led to believe that on Black Friday retailers offer the best bargains of the holiday season. However, as Dana Mattioli reports for the WSJ: “Attention Black Friday shoppers: You’re probably wasting your time. After crunching two to six years’ worth of pricing data for a number of typical holiday gifts, the Wall Street Journal has turned up the best times to go deal hunting — and they almost never involve standing in the freezing cold all night. It turns out that gifts from Barbie dolls to watches to blenders are often priced below Black Friday levels at various times throughout the year, even during the holiday season, and their prices follow different trajectories as the remaining shopping days tick down.”

So, be a CAREFUL SHOPPER and click the chart to read Mattioli’s full report. To see a WSJ video on Black Friday shopping, click here.

Graph by Alberto Cervantes/Wall Street Journal

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