5 things you need to know in SA business today and how 'Black Friday' got its name
1. Hey, hey, its inflation day: The consumer inflation number for October will be released this morning – a big jump from September’s 4.9% number could all but guarantee a rate hike tomorrow.
2. Minister of Public Enterprises Pravin Gordhan continued his testimony at the commission of inquiry into state capture yesterday, while the EFF was protesting outside. EFF leader Julius Malema accused Gordhan of hating Africans and told a small crowd he was worse than the Guptas.
3. After a strong public backlash, Momentum agreed to pay out a death benefit to the widow of a slain policy holder. Momentum now says it has created a policy to "pay out an amount equal to the death benefit (limited to a maximum of R3m) in the case of violent crime, regardless of previous medical history".
4. Moody’s – the only credit rating agency that doesn’t rate South Africa as junk – is backing a 15% hike in electricity tariffs for the next three years to save Eskom.
5. Pepkor – which owns Ackermans and Pep, and was previously known as Steinhoff Africa Retail (STAR) – was slaughtered yesterday. Its share price plummeted more than 11% at one stage – and ended 6% lower after the company warned that its full year profit will be as much as 42% lower.
How 'Black Friday' got its name
Reporting by Dennis Green
The most popular explanation is that the day's sales are so high, it can singlehandedly push a retailer from being "in the red," or losing money, into "the black," or solvency.
That reasoning first appeared in 1981, according to Snopes, but that's apparently years after the Philadelphia police in the US had already coined the term "Black Friday." According to a 1994 article in the Philadelphia Inquirer that was written by one of the reporters who claims to have popularised the term, "Black Friday" was actually coined in the 1960s.
Black Friday has long been considered the start of the holiday shopping season in the US, and since Thanksgiving is always on a Thursday, many schools and some businesses would be closed the day after.
Stores, however, were not closed, causing a spike in street traffic and crowds in Philadelphia's inner city. Police officers in the city started calling the day Black Friday, as they had to work 12-hour shifts to mitigate the madness. From there, the media got a hold of it, and the name was popularized.
The nickname caught on even after PR firms hired by department stores tried to change the name to "Big Friday" in the 1960s. It didn't work.
In South Africa, Black Friday only really started to gain traction in the past two years.
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