China's annual shopping frenzy shatters another record
Shoppers in China have once again broken records after spending more than $14bn within the first two hours of an annual online buying frenzy.
Now in its 10th year, the clamor for deals and discounts known as Singles Day was heralded with characteristic fanfare by Chinese e-commerce giant Alibaba, which has turned an unofficial holiday for people without romantic partners into a yearly windfall for digital retailers.
A massive screen at Alibaba's gala in Shanghai showed the surging sales numbers in real time: By 1 hour and 47 minutes after midnight, 100 billion yuan ($14.3bn) in purchases had been made.
The spending deluge breaks from gloomy forecasts about the world's second-largest economy, which is struggling with a stock market slump and a tariff war with the US.