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Black Friday Retailers Pile on Discounts to Lure Frugal Shoppers

  • Stores are spreading out offers, starting discounts earlier
  • Thanksgiving period still brings in up to 15% of holiday sales
Shoppers wait in line as snow falls outside a Target store ahead of Black Friday in Ohio.

Shoppers wait in line as snow falls outside a Target store ahead of Black Friday in Ohio.

Photographer: Daniel Acker/Bloomberg

The shaky condition of U.S. retail will be put to the test this weekend, when Wal-Mart Stores Inc., Macy’s Inc. and other chains roll out their Black Friday specials.

About 135.8 million Americans are expected to shop in stores or online over the four-day weekend, according to the National Retail Federation, the largest U.S. retail trade organization. The amount they’ve spent has declined over the past two years, dropping 11 percent to $50.9 billion in 2014.