BLACK FRIDAY is the day when crowds of shoppers flock to retail outlets hoping to take advantage of huge bargains. Traditionally a USA event taking place the day after Thanksgiving, Black Friday is now well known in Europe too.
How did it all start? The real story behind Black Friday is more complicated than rushing out to the sales. The first recorded use of the term Black Friday was back in 1869. Back then, Black Friday referred to crash of the US gold market on September 24 of that year. Immediately after, the US stock market went into free fall too, bankrupting many investors ranging from Wall Street brokers to far more modest investors.
In more recent times, the term has become related to retailers. Black Friday had caught on in Philadelphia by the early 1960s, eventually growing throughout the US. The idea didn´t really spread until as recently as 1985 though, when the concept of retail businesses going from the red into the black seemed to catch on.
Black Friday is now popular in the UK. However the US owned ASDA chain´s decision not to run a Black Friday sale this year suggests that the concept isn´t popular with everyone. Internet retailers may argue otherwise though, with some saying that online sales now exceed traditional sales on Black Friday.
The idea has grown though, no longer being just one day long, but stretching into Cyber Monday too. Four days of paradise for some, very different for others.