Toys “R” Us stores will open at 9 p.m. on Thanksgiving, one hour earlier than last year.

It’s the latest in the Black Friday retail battle to one-up the competition.

Wal-Mart moved its usual midnight opening to 10 p.m. this year, and Target stores bumped its opening up to midnight.

Black Friday is the real deal for Toys “R” Us.

The fourth quarter is the make-or-break period for the toy giant. It usually pays for the other three quarters. In 2010, $6 billion, or roughly 45 percent, of the company’s full-year sales of $13.9 billion was rung up in the fourth quarter.

Toys “R” Us hopes to build on the results from last year. In the fourth quarter in 2010, the retailer reported that sales had increased to $5.97 billion from $5.86 billion. Adjusted earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortization, which exclude items that don’t reflect the company’s core operations, rose to $802 million from $789 million in the same period from the previous year.

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