This American Life tackles the sub-prime housing market. I’ve read economists writing about this crisis… and it’s rather difficult to understand. I mean, all this talk of AAA overrated paper, etc. — I got a vague idea of the topic, but I wanted something more. Soo, I read a glowing recommendation of This American Life’s coverage of the topic. A quick summary:
The British company “albam” doesn’t use Chinese manufacturers to make its high quality clothing:
We are an independent company so we can listen to you.
We develop and produce our clothes in the UK because
we think the extra cost is worth the great quality. If we
don’t make a line in the UK it is because we haven’t found
a quality high enough to hang our hat on.
As someone told us “it doesn’t have to be radically
different, just a lot better”, well we are sticking by this.
Wal-Mart is not just the world’s largest retailer. It’s the
world’s largest company—bigger than ExxonMobil,
General Motors, and General Electric. The scale can be
hard to absorb. Wal-Mart sold $244.5 billion worth of
goods last year. It sells in three months what
number-two retailer Home Depot sells in a year. And in its
own category of general merchandise and groceries,
Wal-Mart no longer has any real rivals. It does more
business than Target, Sears, Kmart, J.C. Penney, Safeway,
and Kroger combined.
Leave it to your mildly deluded host to write a post about a topic on which he has almost no specific information. Nevertheless, if I can’t brainstorm at tumbledry, where can I brainstorm? (“In your own head, you’re saying” I know, but that’s not the point we’re debating.) The topic today: business. My qualifications: slim. Forecast: stormy, with a chance of incorrect conclusions.
A recent article by Marc Hedlund (who writes the Wheaties for Your Wallet blog) covers a paper entitled Consumer Myopia and Information Suppression in Crowded Markets. If you scanned too quickly over that title, think about it once more: it means that when consumers don’t take the time to analyze the full extent of their purchases/services in a given market, then they will get overcharged by companies taking advantage of mis/dis/missing-information.