Consumers go big on Black Friday

Shoppers don’t need to wait for their credit card statements to know how much they splurged this year, with new Shopify data spilling all the details… 

What happened: Shopify merchants processed $4.1 billion in sales over Black Friday weekend this year, a 22% jump from last year—a spending surge that surprised analysts and delighted retailers who had low expectations for the holiday shopping season.

  • According to Shopify, Canadians spent an average of $171.60, buying mostly cosmetics, jewelry, shirts, and (everyone’s favourite stocking stuffer) underwear.

Why it matters: Buying power is continuing to defy the odds as the economy slows and inflation remains above the 2% target—but specifically on Black Friday, it means that Canadians have just been waiting for the right deals to make discretionary purchases.

  • Black Friday has always been a bellwether for the rest of the holiday shopping season, but in this economy, consumers might pull back for the rest of the year.

What’s next: In other areas of the economy, signs of slowing growth are still likely to keep interest rates at 5% at the Bank of Canada’s upcoming decision, according to analysts.—LA