Holiday Shopping Off To Record Start

NEW YORK (November 26, 2012)--A survey released by the National Retail Federation suggests that shoppers hit stores and websites in record numbers over the Thanksgiving weekend, attracted by retailers' efforts to make shopping easier, including opening stores on Thanksgiving evening, updating mobile shopping applications for smartphones and tablets, and expanding shipping and layaway options.

According to the survey of 4,000 shoppers that was conducted by research firm BIGinsight for the trade group, a record 247 million shoppers visited stores and websites over the four-day weekend starting on Thanksgiving.

That's up 9.2 percent over last year.

Americans spent more, too.

The average holiday shopper spent $423 over the entire weekend, up from $398.

Total spending over the four-day weekend totaled $59.1 billion, up 12.8 percent from 2011.

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