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Millions of shoppers start on Thanksgiving, according to NRF

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CNY/NNY/S. Tier: Millions of shoppers start on Thanksgiving, according to NRF
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More than 35-million Americans started their shopping on Thanksgiving Day. Thousands of others continued the Black Friday tradition. Our Beth Croughan has a look at just how many people shopped and how much money was spent this weekend.

ALBANY, N.Y. -- In less than a week, shoppers have spent nearly $59.1 billion since Thursday, according to numbers released Sunday by the National Retail Federation.

Many making their way to the stores, post Thanksgiving dinner. "I started at 12 at night till 9 o'clock in the morning. Was with the kids, it was hectic, but you know we had a good time," said Ace Devito.

Devito was among 28 percent of Americans who were at the stores by midnight. The retail federation said that was up by about 4 percent from last year.

But, starting the holiday shopping season before then, took a slight bite out of Black Friday numbers. That's according to a report from retail technology company ShopperTrak.

"I've been doing this for so many years, that it's always so so busy. And honestly, my sisters and I actually said it was pretty dead compared to the other years," said Rebecca Cuda of Albany.

Yet, the NRF said their survey shows more people than ever before shopped both online and in-stores Black Friday. The organization estimates about 89 million people.

"I waited till the day of, 12 noon daytime, stores were packed, jam packed. I mean the lines to pay for the stuff was a half hour wait. But it was worth it," said Sal Miller.

According to the NRF, the average person spent $25 more this weekend than in 2011, with spending expected to continue come Cyber Monday.

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