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Old January 29, 2013, 07:35 PM   #49
Senior Member
Join Date: November 1, 2011
Location: Near St. Louis, Missouri
Posts: 844
It is like all the sheep-dips who complain about price gouging of generators after a storm.

Ever wonder why there is not a warehouse full of generators in every state, just waiting for the next storm/earthquake/power-grid-screwup?

Stockpiling all those generators would cost a lot of money. The retailer can't pass that cost on to the customer during normal times, because his competitors do not maintain a huge warehouse, and they don't have that cost. During normal times, customers are super-price-sensitive, and this drives markups down into the 10%-20% range, which just barely covers operating costs.

So when the disaster hits, the prepared retailer can bring in all his carefully stored stock of generators. He is providing a valuable public service. Of course, he has to fully cover the cost of warehousing in this one moment, which means those generators might be 50% to 100% more expensive than the normal everyday price... Oh! But Wait! If he tries to raise prices, he will be flayed in the press, and the local AG will bring charges... so forget it. why bother warehousing generators in preparation for a disaster. Screw it. When the ones on the shelf are gone, they are gone. The public in need will just have to wait for the resupply truck. Too bad.

During the last power outage, I would have paid twice the normal price for a generator. But there were none to be had at any price. Thanks media... thanks Politicians.
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