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Despite inflation, shoppers expected to flock to malls for Black Friday deals

Even though Black Friday may not be what it used to be, retailers expect to see 8 million more shoppers this weekend than last year.

BUFFALO, N.Y. — With Thanksgiving now in the rearview mirror, retailers are gearing up for what is expected to be a record breaking Black Friday weekend

The National Retail Federation is expecting 166.3 million Americans to hit the malls between Thanksgiving and Cyber Monday — 8 million more than last year.

“If you think about the average increase in holiday spending over the last 10 years is about 5%, so it looks like we're probably going to hit that or maybe even exceeded,” University of Buffalo associate professor of marketing Charles Lindsey told 2 On Your Side. 

That may not seem surprising, but it is, given that inflation is reaching 40-year highs and the recent consumer interest shifting from shopping bags in hand to blue skies and runways. 

“Maybe not buying as many gifts in order to shift a little bit of that money to travel because there's all this pent up demand because people have been not able to travel for the most part,” Lindsey said. 

In spite of this, the number of shoppers is still going up, which experts believe is due to people wanting to enjoy this holiday season while also taking advantage of the lightning deals on display this weekend before prices go back up. 

“It has to do with celebrating. It has to do with indulging a little bit in spite of record inflation, in spite of fears over the economy,” Lindsey told 2 On Your Side. “I think it's been a tough couple of years, and people want to celebrate.”

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