Bronx shoppers hunt for bargains on Black Friday

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Many Bronx residents were out early Friday morning looking for big holiday bargains.

The doors at Bay Plaza opened at 7 a.m., but those looking for the biggest bargains headed out before the rush.

News 12's Lena Salzbank spoke to some shoppers who say lines were shorter than usual this year.

But with holiday sales starting as early as Halloween this year, some say Black Friday splurging may be a fading trend.

In fact, with six fewer shopping days than last year, it will be the shortest season since 2013 because Thanksgiving fell on the fourth Thursday in November - the latest possible date it could be. That means customers will have less time to shop and retailers will have less time to woo them.

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Adobe Analytics predicts a loss of $1 billion in online revenue from a shortened season. Still, it expects online sales will reach $143.7 billion, up 14.1% from last year's holiday season.

The National Retail Federation, the nation's largest retail trade group, forecasts that holiday sales will rise between 3.8% and 4.2%, an increase from the disappointing 2.1% growth seen in the November and December 2018 period that came well short of the group's prediction.

Police are urging shoppers to be vigilant this holiday season.

Authorities are asking shoppers to be sure to park in well-lit areas. Never leave the store with your arms full of packages.

They also suggest that you have your car key in hand, ready to unlock your door.

And be aware of distraction type crimes - that typically occur during this time of the year.

Police say they are stepping up patrols at malls and shopping areas.

AP wire services contributed to this report.

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