Black Friday Kicks Off Holiday Spending Season; Stock Indexes Mostly Flat In Shortened Day

baacU.S. stock indexes are mostly flat in a shortened trading day on Friday when trading volume is light and many Americans are searching for Black Friday deals that kicks off the 2015 holiday spending season.

National Retail Federation

According to National Retail Federation’s preliminary Thanksgiving Weekend Survey, an estimated 135.8 million shoppers, 58.7 percent, definitely will or may shop on Thanksgiving, Black Friday, Small Business Saturday and/or Sunday, similar to the 61.1 percent who planned to last year and more than the 55 percent of holiday shoppers who said they did shop in stores and online over the weekend in 2014.

Gifts cards are still one of the most sought after holiday gift items.

According to the National Retail Federation’s gift card spending survey, shoppers planning to buy gift cards will spend slightly less on average ($153.08 vs. $172.74 last year), the first drop in average spending since 2009.

NRF’s spending survey conducted by Prosper Insights and Analytics revealed that 56.6 percent of those celebrating the holidays had already started shopping by early November, up from 54.4 percent last year and 16 percent from the 49 percent who had started by this time in 2008, the first time NRF added the question.

Next week will be a busy week for investors with Fed Chair Janet Yellen giving 2 speeches next week, the ECB’s monetary policy decision will be made on Thursday December 3rd, and Friday will see the results from the November jobs report, the final one before the Federal Reserve’s meeting in mid- December.

On Friday OPEC will also meet and decide about whether production cuts are necessary.

According to a forecast economists from briefing.com, the U.S. economy is expected to have added 208,000 jobs in November which would be lower than the 271,000 non-farm payroll gain in October, the highest monthly gain in 2015.

Private payroll processor ADP will also report on Wednesday December 2nd.

Full Economic Calendar Next Week

Monday- Chicago PMI (November), Pending Home Sales (October)

Tuesday- Construction Spending (October), ISM Index (November), Auto-Truck Sales (November)

Wednesday- ADP Employment Change, MBA Mortgage Index, Crude Inventories, Productivity (revised) 3rd Q, Unit Labor Costs (revised), Fed’s Beige Book (December)

Thursday- Factory Orders (October), jobless claims, ISM Services (November), Challenger Job Cuts (November), Natural Gas Inventories

Friday- Non-farm payroll report (November), Trade Balance (October)

-Johnathan Schweitzer

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About Johnathan Schweitzer 1467 Articles
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