Storm should turn into blue skies for retailers
The cold weather and storms will impede Thanksgiving travel, but stores of all kinds will benefit from colder weather at the beginning of the holiday season, said Paul Walsh, a business analyst at The Weather Channel.
"Of course it'll be windy and might impact the Macy's Day parade, but Black Friday is going to be clear," he said. "It's going to be dry for the most part, and for a retailer that is perfect weather. I think ... we have a pretty good tailwind going into the holiday."
But bad weather over the weekend could cut into sales, Walsh added, and the "risk of a weekend snowstorm is elevated compared to prior years."
As long as it stays dry, cold weather is actually a good sign for many stores, he said. Polls conducted by the Weather Channel showed a significant rise in demand for outerwear in the Northeast. It's likely to remain seasonably cold at least through the first half of the season and will be much colder than last year.
"Demand for the seasonal items is going to be much higher," Walsh said. "They [retailers] will have a better chance of increasing margins for those items."