Black Friday is taking a different shape this year amid the coronavirus pandemic. Several retailers like Saks and Macy's that closed during the spring have since reduced their inventories, which has led them to scale back on the traditional discounts associated with the post-Thanksgiving shopping event. Health and safety measures will also be in place at many stores. Best Buy, for instance, is employing contactless self-checkout and doubled the number of parking spots available for its pick-up service. When all is said and done, though, sales are expected to be made. The National Retail Federation expects November and December sales, excluding autos, gasoline, and restaurants, to rise somewhere between 3.6 and 5.2 percent. Last year, sales jumped 4 percent, and the average year-over-year increase the past five years is 3.5. Online sales are expected to shoot up from 20 percent to 30 percent.
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