NEW YORK (
) -- Black Friday is a day for shoppers and retailers, but does it also present an opportunity for investors? No so much.
"Black Friday is not a trade-able holiday," said Richard Hastings, macro and consumer strategist at Global Hunter Securities. "We see
analysts and consultants running around for some sort of insight, counting bags, number of cars in parking lots. But why? It doesn't make sense."
Black Friday is not indicative of the entire retail space.
"It is a middle-market phenomenon," Hastings said, as most luxury retailers sit on the Black Friday sidelines when it comes to door buster promotions and early store openings.
"While Black Friday results are likely important for the fundamentals of a company, we find inconsistent importance of Black Friday to retail stocks' price movement going back to 1985," Goldman Sachs analyst Adrianne Shapira wrote in a note. "However, we have found that over the past 16 years retail volatility has tended to decline sharply into the month of December, favoring option selling strategies in retail."
Shapira studied the price of stocks back to 1985 or when shares first started trading, looking at the share price from the close of the Friday before Thanksgiving to the Tuesday after Thanksgiving and divided it the stock's average weekly realized move.
She found the stocks that tend to be more volatile around Black Friday week include
Bed Bath & Beyond
Least volatile stocks include
Family Dollar Stores
"We believe this is supportive of option buying strategies for those stocks that are the most volatile on earnings and Black Friday in November and option selling strategies on less holiday-driven companies," Shapira wrote. "We believe that retail investors focus on the early holiday sales results around Black Friday, but stock volatility declines toward the end of the holiday season, when holiday sales trends are widely known."
Black Friday is a good indicator of sell-throughs, traffic and the promotional environment, said Dana Telsey of Telsey Advisory Group. "Black Friday will set the tone for the holiday season and help gauge 2012 outlooks. But in terms of stock movement, it is not a big day for trading."
"Skip Black Friday trading," warned Brian Sozzi, RealMoney contributor and chief of business development at Nothing But Gold Productions. "Instead use the day as an opportunity to accumulate data then on Monday use results as a guide to trade into the end of the year."
Reported by Jeanine Poggi in New York.
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