If you missed the big Black Friday sales and deals, an emerging point of view says you may actually have dodged a financial bullet.

Millions flocked to their favorite stores on Black Friday and economists expect that consumers will have spent more than $3 (B) billion dollars to kick off the holiday shopping season this year. But some financial experts say you should have a plan before you grab your checkbook or credits cards. And others want you to consider not shopping at all. Bruce McClary with the National Foundation for Credit Counseling says consumers shouldn’t necessarily plan to do all of their holiday bargain hunting on Black Friday. "You can find bargains throughout the year and Black Friday is not the only day of the year where sale prices are available. So I think it's helpful for people to look for opportunities throughout the year to save on things they know they'll need for the holiday season."

However, another group feels the best way to protect both your finances and sanity is to skip Black Friday altogether. Buy Nothing Day coincides with Black Friday and serves as a way to avoid what is viewed as the heavy-handed commercialism that's overtaken the holiday season. Buy Nothing Day encourages people to cut up their credit cards and pursue alternative activities. The term Black Friday was coined in the 1960’s and adopted by corporations and merchants because many count on holiday sales to generate a large percentage of their annual revenues. (JM/JK)