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Chaos & an injury as shoppers queue for #BlackFriday bargains

Shoppers across the country started queuing as early as 7am this morning.

Picture: Rafiq Wagiet/EWN.

JOHANNESBURG - The day typically known for discounted retail goods and great deals already has people lining up for their bargains and fighting to get ahead.

Black Friday, which originated in the US, has gained popularity here at home over the past few years.

Paramedics say a woman has been injured at the The Pavilion shopping centre in Durban.

Reports says she was treated after she sustained injuries to her shoulder during a stampede at the mall.

Hundreds of people gathered at the Sandton Shopping Centre since 7am this morning, to secure their spots in the queue.

Some are already complaining about long lines at various shops and scuffles.

One shopper says, “Its hectic over here, people are fighting to get what they need. I got here at about 7 o’clock.”

Another says the experience has been horrific.

“It’s horrific, its cheap things but we are standing and waiting in queues. I don’t think it’s worth it.”

Meanwhile shoppers at N1 City in Cape Town arrived in their droves and are pushing and shoving their way around a crowded supermarket, desperate to get their hands on discounted goods.

Alexal Kannemeyer from Belhar says she's not sure if it's actually worth it.

“I am now thinking should I just move all this, should I just go or is it really worth it because I don’t even have my monthly stuff that I need here.”

Another shopper believes consumers, including himself have been duped into this craze.

“It’s quite hectic, I did not expect there to be so many people here.”

This didn’t seem to deter him though from joining the madness.

Many stores will have extended operating hours today with closing as late as 11pm.

ONCE OFF BOOST

Economists say the shopping bonanza is not likely to have a significant impact on the economy other than a once-off boost in sales.

Economists say the huge demand to join in on Friday's festivities shows that consumers are desperate for lower prices and are still feeling the lagging effect from the drought.

ETM Analytics’s Jana van De Venter says the fact that retailers are able to sell items at a discounted price doesn't mean they can ordinarily afford to do so.

“We are not of the view that retailers are charging prices high are excessively high, fundamental analysis shows that retailers are already squeezing margins given the weak consumption demand environment.

Argon asset management's Thabi leoka says end-of-year retail sales are not out new.

“Leading up to the Christmas season and also January because of schools.”

Online marketing agency the principality has also noted that conversation around Black Friday on social media has tripled since last year, suggesting a growing interest on the shopping event.

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