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Monday, January 4, 2016

article 2 of 2 today

Article 2 of 2 Today

FIRE SALE?
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note: YOU BUY NOW!!! NOWWWWW!!!!! Malthusian Survivalist Newsletter #6
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A minion asked if I thought that there was going to be a time when everything went on super deluxe sale, everything must go we are going out of business, a nationwide fire sale on everything as everyone and every business was desperate for cash and so slashed the prices on everything.  And if so, should you save cash to pick up these bargains?  My short answer is of course, no, but the devil is in the details.  Which, if you don’t agree with would change your answer if not mine.  First, a bit of background.  In our living memories, if not recently, this sort of thing happened from time to time for a lucky few.  Arms dealers and the former Soviet Union.  A garage sale at the end of the day which actually still had useable items left rather than the usual stained toddler clothes and broken plastic items ( which was about what the former Soviet citizens had to offer for sale as their pensions went unpaid ).  An off day when no one was online and the seller on E-Bay had no idea what he was doing.  But the norm seems to be that fire sales are rare.  There are way too many merchants, wholesalers and retailers, brick and mortar or online, out there willing to buy inventory.  You can’t compete with lot sales.  There is planned obsolescence, so by the time an item no longer interests the seller it doesn’t even interest the buyer ( such as VHS tapes or older computers ), suggesting inventories are trashed after a certain point.

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Then of course there is our old nemesis Just-In-Time Inventory ensuring that there is never enough extra inventory on hand for a fire sale to take place.  Do you notice any Halloween candy going on sale in November anymore?  I have a sneaking suspicion they send it back to be repackaged for Christmas candy, thousands of Bangladesh child workers ripping open spooky goblin M&M candy wrappings, depositing the candy back into giant crates where they are sent back to the plant that deposits them into elves and reindeer bags.  Or, I could just be paranoid and there isn’t that much of a demand for candy anymore, not since corn goes into gas tanks now instead of into sweetener and the price of candy tripled and so less folks buy or give away candy and the companies have figured out to send minus X amount each year.  But the point remains that there just isn’t all that much in the way of inventory hanging around creating a surplus.  When our local dollar store ( not a national brand, just a regional one-I was too lazy to ever look up and see if it was just ours closing due to high rent or if it was the chain lacking financing or volume buying power and so going out of business ) closed it took a few truck trips to pick up most of the inventory left behind, but far fewer than you’d think given the store size ( it is now a Sears, after sitting vacant a couple of years-rents really are insane here which might be why all the idiots from California feel right at home ).  Picture the cardboard bins that sit on a pallet and hold watermelons.  We had about a dozen on those filled with loose merchandise, about half cookies and other dollar food.  And they donated those rather than keep paying rent or employees to fire sale them.  Leading one to believe once financial ruin sets in, getting pennies on the dollar costs too much ( of course, granted, this was a single event and might mean nothing ).

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18 comments:

  1. There is another reason going-out-of-business sales are for shit anymore, there are companies that manage them for maximum profit. It's not the owner marking every thing down 50% and getting enough to pay the bankruptcy lawyer. Instead, these companies have devised maximum profit methods; advertise "up to 75% off" but only mark down 20% the first week then they mark every thing down another 10% the next week until there is only junk left.










































    ReplyDelete
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    1. So, "you get screwed up to 75% of the time"

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  2. During the time when Kmart files Chapt. 11 Bankruptcy, they decided to close several non performing stores. What they did was sell the inventory to a Liquidator and they held the sale that cleared out all of the stuff. I got some good deals on things I had been wanting, like a Tonneau cover for my PU from LeBra for $80. Ironically the Kmart in my town, was torn down and an Ikea is there now and the town I grew up in, a Target sits there now.

    As far as I know (Haven't been there in a while) the very first Kmart in Garden City Michigan still stands (Store #4000) Old and rundown. GC has fought Wal-Mart and as far as I know there isn't one there. Another tidbit here. When Kmart emerged from CH 11, the new stock went way up. Eddy Lampert who owned it, and Kmart bought Sears, NOT the other way around. So it used to be Kmart Corp. K on NYSE to Kmart Holdings KMRT NASDAQ to Sears Holdings SHLD NASDAQ.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. If I can screw Wal-Mart on a sale by going to K-Mart, I do. Their crap doesn't break as fast. I'll never go to Sears for anything ever. They can both fall off the face of the earth and I'd barely blink.

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  3. "..they donated those rather than keep paying rent or employees to fire sale them. Leading one to believe once financial ruin sets in, getting pennies on the dollar costs too much..."

    Genius observation. There is so little cash or motivation available that the "managers" of assets walk away without so much as putting a tarp over sale-able/salvageable merchandise, like banks letting water pour through the roof for 18 months before getting around to putting someone in-charge of getting/preserving real-world value (rent, re-sale, heat-light on/people inside, RFN!) in a repossessed house.

    There have been reports of more than 50,000 houses sitting cold in zombie-status (more than 12 months not legally occupied) inside the pdx metro. I see boarded-up houses and yards full of squatter trash regularly. It's criminal financial negligence (TBTJ!) and bad politics.

    pdxr13

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    1. Idle houses equal higher rent for other properties.

      Delete
    2. But the point is that the house looses value when unoccupied.
      And since the banks between them own 90% of the properties in some areas it would be easy for them to set rent at "market value" to keep from excessively depressing the rental market.
      The banks just don't want the headache (as I tried to be a landlord briefly, trust me it is a HUGE headache). And real estate investors are pretty much swamped with just the good pre foreclosures.

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    3. I know the banks make money off vacant houses, one way or another. The details of course escape me. If they were losing money, they would have Obammy paying the bankers to move Black families into them as part of welfare.

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  4. One good idea here ..... save all the money you can. Most of the junk on sale will not save your life. That cash may buy you food or fuel to get out of dodge. Don't keep much in a bank they will take it all "bail-in baby", save the rich.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Great idea, but "all"? Moderate that a bit, perhaps.

      Delete
    2. How about the vast majority of money should be held in your hand. Some Italian banks have just begun a bail-in (aka taking part of your deposits/accounts). If you keep just enough in the bank to keep this months expenses paid, and then at least enough multiples of that under the mattress to cover as much monthly expenses to keep afloat when the bank seizes half 'your' the checking account.
      And people shouldn't think that it wont happen that because they have their mortgage and checking/savings with the same bank that the bank wont seize the checking/savings account and STILL expect to be paid for the mortgage...

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    3. I know it is just a figure of speech, but of course never hide money under the mattress. Theft or fire. Bury in a plastic zip-lock in a plastic jar ( such as peanut butter ). And spot on about those whoring banks double dicking you.

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    4. When burying paper money, you might think about buying some PM's and burying those. Keep the paper moving above ground, away from you. +1 on banks as a place to drop checks and spend for on-line stuff. Currency for daily spending in-pocket.

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    5. You want silver, you had better buy NOW. Already shortages. When dollar tanks, the retail market dries up in like five minutes as everyone goes online or drives to the coin shop.

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    6. The premiums on "junk silver" (pre-1964 coins with 90% Ag)are already shooting up. APMEX, the biggest online dealer now has 36% premiums even on bags ($100 face) of fifty cent coins and their silver dollars (other than "culls" or damaged are approaching 100%). COMEX "spot prices" may be low but premiums are driving up acquisition costs.

      Bullpasture

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    7. "You want silver, you had better buy NOW." -JMD

      +1. Go to the bank and withdraw cash. Contact your broker to close your 401K/IRA (money will not be yours for weeks!). This breaks the paper trail, and it can go pretty fast in some strip clubs. Use ATM card to get $20-$60 in liquor stores and dive gambling places. Instead of stopping at Hottie's Pole of Mystery and Video Poker Emporium with your bundle of FRN's, go to the nearest vendor of "Coins" and buy the lowest-premium whatever (circulated ASE's, "rounds", US 90% pre-1965, 10oz bars) hesitating slightly on the 100oz bar unless you already have a few ammo cans of smaller coins. Buy the 100oz J&M 99.99% bar if everything else is gone. Tell no one. Never-ever buy PM's with a credit/debit card. Find more than one coin shop to buy from, for OPSEC as well as inventory availability.

      Repeat weekly. Occasionally, stop at Hottie's for a drink, and pull $20 out of the ATM. Lose your cheapie phone there (on), with a full charge, then stop back next week and ask about it.

      Get an ounce of gold per .50 cal can of silver, for diversification. Fractional foreign gold with low premium for non-perfection is (imho) the best. Mexican 50Peso if getting lots, but the little Dos Y Medio is cute (and not too much per coin). Swiss or French 20 Francs are wonderful 0.18oz actual-gold-weight coins designed to circulate.

      Buy some "MTM SAC Survivor Ammo Can" on Amazon after clicking on a sidebar on this site. There is no better for $20. Nalgene hard plastic bottles that don't say "BPA FREE" (use these for drinking water) are very sturdy 1 Liter direct burial waterproof containers for little money (free pile on curb, thrift store).
      Bury well, and leave clues for yourself to recover.

      When various pundits proclaim that gold is "going up" 10x and silver 30x, it is both true and b.s. The Price in US Dollars is going up (availability at that price during crisis: zero. Selling? I know a guy paying triple the official price in bitcoin and e-Yuan), but appreciation in terms of "spending power" will be maybe a double or triple, which is great when compared to the passed-around military-camp-follower dry-hump that anyone who works for US Dollars (your boss may pay you in food and New California Republic Notes, so you keep working!) or (God forbid!) gets a payout from an annuity/pension/SSI will have in ability to obtain food. Of course, you already own a couple years worth of boring survival calories in buckets and vitamins, right? Get now, before silver or ammo.


      pdxr13

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    8. Damn, you put a lot of thought into opsec and silver. Of course, I bought mine with casino tips so I didn't have to worry much.

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    9. Bullpasture-I always liked the plain jane 1 ounce coin. Least premium, at the time no counterfit issues. Shop around for prices-the spot financial is a fairy tale. Buy immediate delivery only-no promises which can be broken.

      Delete

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