Expand holiday shopping period

A pair of developments among retailers this holiday season could benefit shoppers and retail workers alike.

It’s too early to call it a trend, but some stores chose not to open Thanksgiving Day, giving their employees time off to spend with family and friends. Some brick-and-mortar shops, alas, opted to get a jump on holiday shopping.

Meanwhile, multiple retail operations big and small began advertising Black Friday deals in early November. Perhaps that was hyperbole, perhaps the sales were in earnest; today, shoppers will find out.

We see how these developments, if they expand and continue, could be helpful to people on both sides of the sales counter.

Because, while today traditionally has been the beginning of the holiday gift-buying season, the number of shopping days before Christmas can be a major cause of stress at a time that is supposed to be joyful. That especially will be true next year, when Thanksgiving falls on Nov. 28 — leaving 27 days to get your shopping done, even if you hit the stores after gobbling the turkey and trimmings.

But starting those Black Friday deals Friday, Nov. 1, would give shoppers and retailers an almost four-week head start. And allow employees to get their fill of relatives and a holiday feast.

We urge retailers to plan on an accelerated shift from Halloween to Christmas decor and merchandise next fall.