SCOREBOARD: Retail frolic

Despite a slip in Black Friday sales, the US holiday season has been good for retail and for markets.

Black Friday sales may have fallen relative to a year ago, and that of course is attracting some headlines, but the fact is the holiday period – including Thanksgiving and the week long bargain-fest that preceded it – is expected to lead to strong sales overall according to reports. The retail federation is looking for at least 4 per cent growth (note how they don’t talk the economy down like our own retailers association) and early reports of strong sales (average spending up 6 per cent) saw consumer stocks bid – Target up 1.2 per cent and Wal-Mart up almost 2 per cent. As it is, the Dow put on 172 points, the S&P500 was up 1.3 per cent while the Nasdaq rose 1.4 per cent. It should be a good day for the All Ords then – the SPI suggests something like 0.7 per cent.

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