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Black Friday comes a bit later
Last week's strong sales prove that Black Friday may no longer be the biggest shopping day - report.
December 7, 2004: 11:06 AM EST

NEW YORK (CNN/Money) - Forget Black Friday! A shift is occurring in holiday shopping habits, according to a published report.

Visa's Holiday SpendTrak report said Monday that consumers spent nearly the same on Friday, Dec. 3 as this year's Black Friday, a day when most consumers had time off from work and were able to take care of their holiday shopping lists.

The report also indicated that spending by consumers and businesses on Visa branded payment cards during the past week (Nov. 29 to Dec. 5) totaled more than $26.1 billion, a nearly 20-percent increase over the same period in 2003.

The SpendTrak data, however, only showed sales on Black Friday up 10.8 percent at $8 billion.

"This past week's strong sales numbers prove that Black Friday is not the tall tale sign it used to be as an indicator for holiday spending," Wayne Best, senior vice president of Strategic and Economic Analysis for Visa USA, said in a statement.

Visa, the world's largest credit card company in terms of volume, said consumers have spent over $116.5 billion using Visa branded payment cards, and e-commerce is also showing a healthy growth.

"During the past work week (Nov. 29 to Dec. 3), daily average spending online exceeded $400 million," Best said in the statement. "But spending online over the weekend (Saturday and Sunday) dropped by near half," he added.

Overall, the Visa report indicated that e-commerce has enjoyed a 34.1 percent increase this past week over the same period in 2003. And since Nov. 1, consumers have spent over $116.5 billion using Visa cards, a 17-percent jump over the same time last year.  Top of page

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