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Black Friday has turned into one of the most awaited dates of the entire year, especially for those looking for the best offers and discounts. The first thing that people tend to ask themselves about Black Friday is when is it celebrated; Black Friday is always on the last Friday in November, after Thanksgiving, which is another US holiday that everyone has heard of. So, how long have we been celebrating it?
The actual origin of this particular holiday isn’t as clear as we’d like, and there are many different theories. One of the most widely accepted theories has to do with something that happened in 1896 in the US, which isn’t as happy a time as the holiday would suggest.
The story goes that two Wall Street brokers wanted to earn a small fortune and they began accumulating gold during August and September, not necessarily by legal means. On September 24th gold was at its highest, although Ulysses S. Grant, 18th US President, knew what was going on and decided to place all of the gold from the US reserve on the market. This quickly caused a drop in prices that financially ruined many people, which was known as black Friday. This turned into an economic crisis that affected the entire country for months. One of the investors managed to make money, although it’s unsure how he did it, while the other ended up broke.
The first time the term Black Friday was ever used to describe discounts or shopping was in 1950. In Philadelphia, there was a day of the year when people were out in masses for Christmas shopping as well as a very competitive game of American football that was going on between the US marines and the military. The police dubbed the day black Friday due to disturbances. This term slowly but surely spread outwards, being named during 1966 and in 1975 by the New York Times, who had the same issue as the police in Philadelphia.
In the US, Black friday was already well known, although it really started taking off in as far as discount offers in 2003, when Walmart decided to flood the market with offers. However, it started to spread around the world around 2010, with the help of internet and social media.
In 2012 the Spanish Government, then presided by Mariano Rajoy, changed the laws and allowed stores to begin holding sales at any time of year in order to increase sales in all types of business. Up until then, sales could only be held on certain dates; January sales and those celebrated during summer.
This is why Black Friday has only been celebrated in Spain since 2012, when a well-known electronics brand started a marketing campaign regarding the holiday. Many other companies began to follow their footsteps and they joined the Black Friday bandwagon. In just a few years this date has turned into one of the most awaited in Spain, which previously only had seasonal sales.
Over the years many more companies have decided to participate, although over the past few years some companies have declined to participate as it can actually have a bad effect on those smaller companies.
For years now Black Friday, celebrated on the last Friday in November, has outdone the winter sales; people decide to get in all of their Christmas shopping on that day rather than waiting for November to start. This year it's on November 26th. However, it’s always to be cautious when purchasing online on black Friday; it’s a great chance for those trying to trick others with fake sale prices. We recommend taking a look at prices in the weeks before Black Friday to make sure that you’re getting the discount you think you are, rather than accidentally spending more than you need to.
In Spain, and in the rest of the world, Black Friday is closely linked to Cyber Monday, which is the Monday after Black Friday, November 29th; this year Cyber Monday will be 16 years old. Many companies tend to make the most of this and offer discounts all weekend long until Monday. In some places, offers may be up a week earlier. Some larger companies take advantage of this, although smaller companies and stores don’t really have much profit margin.