Monday, November 17, 2008

Booms and Busts.

The way I figure it, I've experienced only two real recessions; the current one, and the huge recession in the early '80's.

I came in at the bottom of the first one, and that's not actually a bad place to start; at least I had nowhere to go but up.

I didn't even feel the other national recessions, other fads being in play at the time.

But at the same time, the store Pegasus has suffered at least 7 major recessions, and at least 3 minor recessions. Booms and Busts.

What I mean by this, is that the store has had 20% drops YoY in major products at least 7 times, and 10% drops YoY at least 3 times.

Sports cards.

Comics.

Magic.

Non-Sport cards.

Beanie Babies.

Pogs.

Pokemon.

All dropped off a cliff at one point or another.

Comics, sports cards and Magic have done so on a second, smaller bounce at least once.

It got so I expected a new fad every 2 years or so.

The first 2 drops I was unprepared for, and handled badly, putting me in debt for years.

The middle two I handled O.K. At least I didn't lose money.

The last three I handled extremely well, and not only didn't lose money but actually came out ahead.

I haven't seen any real fads since the decline of Pokemon, Christmas 2000. But the Bend economy itself began a surge so I've been riding that wave.

Anyway, this is an old familiar feeling, a sinking feeling I admit, but very very familiar.

Perhaps a bit more scary since unlike the product booms and busts, this is a national recession that I have no control over.

It's still pretty amazing to me that the same factors seem to come into play every time.

Especially the psychological factors.

The thing I've been watching for, and kind of dreading, was the psychology shift from gung ho, to unaware, to oh, my god the sky is falling.

I think we may have entered that last phase.

1 comment:

Michael said...

Business cycle? I really do not think this is a normal downturn. I feel the faith in our system of laws and governance has been destroyed. Who still believes in the free market? Who believes the words uttered by our leaders? Who believes the taxpayer and our children's interest is being represented?

Paulson warned of imminent collapse if he wasn't given 700 billion and free reign to do as he saw fit. 290 billion later and he admits buying troubled assets isn't working. The Bush administration comes out today and declares they won't request the other 350 billion the TARP was allotted. I guess Bloomberg suing to find out how the first 290 billion was spent woke them up that the free looting period was over.

If many people do not go to prison over the fraud, waste and theft in the next year there will be hell to pay. Local governments will be just as accountable. Keep ignoring the citizenry and thinking they aren't paying attention.