5 Myths About Black Friday, Busted

Here’s what you really need to know about this big shopping day the Friday after Thanksgiving.

Vector Black Friday advertisement on a black tag with a red background
(Image credit: Getty Images)

Most people assume the term "Black Friday" refers to retailers moving out of the red and into the black — that is, turning a profit for the year as shoppers flock to stores to do their holiday shopping on the day after Thanksgiving. 

But, according to several accounts, the expression actually originated in the 1960s when Philadelphia police officers used it to describe heavy vehicle and pedestrian traffic the day after Thanksgiving. You just learned something new, right?

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Cameron Huddleston
Former Online Editor, Kiplinger.com

Award-winning journalist, speaker, family finance expert, and author of Mom and Dad, We Need to Talk.

Cameron Huddleston wrote the daily "Kip Tips" column for Kiplinger.com. She joined Kiplinger in 2001 after graduating from American University with an MA in economic journalism.

With contributions from