Is Black Friday catching up on Boxing Day?

A weak Canadian dollar and more retail deals may keep shoppers closer to home this year

As relatively new events in Canada, Black Friday and Cyber Monday have only recently gained prominence.

“Up until four or five years ago, Boxing Day was the focus for Canadian retailers,” said Retail Council of Canada spokesman Michael LeBlanc.

Since its introduction to Canada in 2008, Black Friday and Cyber Monday have become increasingly popular with more retailers offering exciting deals and events.

“Last year was a big year,” said LeBlanc. “It was kind of a tipping point year, where there was a critical mass of retailers that operate in Canada, participating in the black Friday and Cyber Monday events. We expect that there will be even more this year.”

The impact of the 75 cents to to the  U.S. dollar paired with retailers’ extensive deals and promotions is expected to help keep sales in Canada. The advantage of cheaper shopping and availability of products is no longer pulling Canadians south of the border.

However, Black Friday and Cyber Monday still has a way to go. Unlike its U.S. version or Boxing Day, black Friday is not a holiday. This influences the amount of people that come out to shop.

“We’ll have to wait to see the impact of Black Friday and Cyber Monday on the sales of Boxing Day,” said LeBlanc.

“They might shift, which is not surprising given that the black Friday and Cyber Monday happen before Christmas, making them gift-giving occasions. Whereas boxing day is more of a self-purchase day.”

LeBlanc says retailers should expect to see a change in when people buy, rather than an increase in spending.

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