Black Friday Sales Rose, But More Discounts Loom

Shoppers flooded stores over the weekend, but sales growth was slim and a harsh holiday selling season seems likely. Specialty stores lagged

At 3 a.m. on Black Friday, Eric Sjoberg, 29, wasn't camping outside a store in a long line to get first dibs on the "door-buster" discounted items that have come to characterize the day that traditionally kicks off the holiday shopping season. Instead he was picked up from his home by a limo from electronics retailer Best Buy (BBY) and transported to a nearby store in Needham, Mass. There he was greeted by cheering employees and let into the store at 4:30 a.m.—a half-hour before it officially opened. Sjoberg purchased a 50-inch plasma-screen TV, a laptop, and several DVDs, exiting just as the crowds stormed in.

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