Futures are pointing towards a slightly lower start this morning despite some encouraging data related to the holiday shopping season. Early numbers are positive as consumers have spent over $11.6 billion on the holiday season-to-date, up 13% versus this time last year.
Black Friday was especially good to the internet as online sales came in at $650 million, which represented a 9% increase versus Black Friday 2009. Thanksgiving Day, which is traditionally a lighter day for online sales, achieved nearly a 30% increase to over $400 million.
PayPal, eBay’s (EBAY, $31.15, down $0.06) popular online payment method, reported strong Black Friday shopping results, as sales surged nearly 27% in total payment volume on Black Friday 2010, compared to the previous year.
eBay made a gem of a purchase when it acquired PayPal back in 2002 for $1.5 billion. PayPal accounted for almost 40% of eBay’s overall revenue in the most recent quarter, versus just over 20%, five years ago. EBay’s payments unit, which consists mostly of PayPal, did $840 million in payments in its latest quarter and might hit $1 billion this quarter.
The real growth for PayPal, err, we mean eBay, is the mobile ad business which saw over a 300% increase in mobile shopping on Black Friday. eBay may not want to admit it, but PayPal could end up becoming bigger than eBay itself down the road.
Shares of eBay hit a fresh intra-day high of $31.48 on Friday.
Retailers will remain in focus today as more sales results from Black Friday start to trickle in, and online retailers gear up for today’s Cyber Monday sales.
As we head to press, Dow futures are down 5 points to 11,025 while the S&P futures are off by a point to 1,182. The Nasdaq 100 futures are lower by 3 points to 2,143. We have a lot to cover in our Members Area so let’s get to it.