Buy Your Jeans Now Before Cotton Prices Go Up

It’s been a bad year for cotton-producing regions in India, China and Pakistan and the price of cotton has skyrocketed since the summer. So before retailers begin tacking this cost of materials increase onto the consumer, the forward-thinking people at have put together a list of what items you should stock up on.

Among the items on SmartMoney’s Buy Now list are:
*Denim Jeans
*Dress Shirts
*Socks and Underwear

But the site also advises that you might want to wait on some cotton products. For instance, it says to hold off for a bit and wait for January white sales on cotton bed and bath supplies:

Because these sheets, towels and other home goods are already on store shelves, they won’t be immediately affected by 2011 price increases. Don’t wait too long, though because late spring and summer stock hitting shelves are likely to be priced higher.

What to Buy Before Cotton Prices Rise []


Edit Your Comment

  1. Loias supports harsher punishments against corporations says:

    Why don’t shortages like this cause prices to rise immediately, since the shortage are already determined? In comparison, the price of oil is determine by predictions of the future with no real evidence of known shortages predicted. I don’t appreciate the dicotomy.

    • valleygirl_18002 says:

      Speculative trading at its finest. First oil, now commodities such as cotton, wheat, milk, etc.

      If you believe the conspiracists, then it’s all a part of the “grand plan” for NWO.

    • wrjohnston91283 says:

      Both the elastic demand for cotton products (vs inelastic for oil/gas) as well as the fact that there are multiple middlemen between the commodity of cotton and a pair of jeans. Cloth manufacturer >> clothing manufacturer >> possible wholesaler >> retailer; plus the fact that cotton is traded in units not meant for retail (bales I believe, rather than shirts, or jeans, or socks). Gasoline however IS traded in gallons, which is how we buy it and there are less middlemen (and doesn’t change units) between the commodity exchange and the retailer.

      • MrEvil says:

        Cotton is priced per pound and is sold in whole bales. My dad used to work at a Cotton warehouse (now part time at a gin) and I have family that raises it.

    • Blueskylaw says:

      Because cotton producers don’t give as much money to politicians as oil producers do.

    • dg says:

      Because manufacturers buy ROLLS of fabric in advance so they have what they need, when they need it. Roll = 10′ wide, perhaps several hundred feet long. You buy rooms full of these depending on your production needs.

      So you’ve got what you need for a few months – otherwise you don’t have production because it takes a while to get the fabric you want, in the colors and textures and weight available, from the mills.

      Because you don’t need to buy it for a few months, there’s a lagging behind of the price increases (usually) because everyone knows what the cost of that stuff is so you can’t pass on your cost increases until everyone starts incurring them…

  2. areaman says:

    Great picture.

    Also, waiting for someone to say, “I grow my own cotton”.

    • GuyGuidoEyesSteveDaveâ„¢ says:

      That’s just silly. I do pick and gin my own cotton though.

      • Sian says:

        We need to have a talk sometime about that ‘slave plantation’ theme park of yours sometime.

        Though the ‘Whippin’ Pole’ ride always pulls in great reviews.

      • Me - now with more humidity says:

        I like to pick my own gin… off the shelf… at home.

  3. peebozi says:

    I’m with the tea party on this one…things were sooo much better in the 1800’s. cotton was so much cheaper then but now, because of the liberals and their “change”, we can’t have slaves pick the cotton anymore.

    • SecretShopper: pours out a lil' liquor for the homies Wasp & Otter says:

      srsly the cost of labor has skyrocketed since the civil war

    • El Soze says:

      Broad sweeping accusations masked in sarcasm does not make for a good comment, let alone a point.
      But by all means let’s continue blind “us vs them” because it has gotten us so far already

      • peebozi says:

        there’s no us vs. them.

        it’s us LOL@ them.

        I’m simply mocking the tea party because it’s fun and funny.

        who said I’m using broad generalization, muchacho? typical TP’ers are uneducated, bitter, elderly, dilusional, self righteous, religious, sociopathic and generally, all around ignorant.

        • El Soze says:

          you’d think I would have learned by now not to feed trolls

        • LandruBek says:
        • PTB315 says:

          “typical TP’ers are uneducated, bitter, elderly, dilusional, self righteous, religious, sociopathic and generally, all around ignorant.”

          That’s about the fucking definition of broad generalizations, and still an entirely worthless comment thread. And download Firefox or any current browser with built in spell check so that when you are wasting everyone time you at least spell “delusional” correctly, or end your stupid rant with “sociopaths” instead of trying to create a new adjective.

  4. rookie says:

    My third cousin, twice removed, farms nothing but cotton in the panhandle of Texas. This has been a bumper year, he expects to yield three bales (truckloads) per acre. So does everyone else in the region. Texas cotton may not be as soft as the Egyptian, but, when prices go up, know this…

    Yer being screwed…


    • Nighthawke says:

      I agree, three HUGE warehouses full of Grade SM or higher bales are down here at Portland, waiting to be picked up. There must be more like that on further north and east along the belt.

      They were running modules to the gins well after the pickers were finished with the field. It was a good season, but not as good as the one 6-7 years ago. They were buying Hummers and tractors off the lot with the checks they were getting.

  5. aloria says:

    I’ve been wearing the same three or four pair of jeans since 2004; I am sure they can survive a few more years. I don’t even bother looking for new ones anymore since most retailers in my price range have vanity sized my size out of existence.

    • cash_da_pibble says:

      I just pick up a pair of jeans as they wear out- I last night just bought a pair to replace the dying ones I purchased three years ago. Unfortuntately, I had a pretty big Jeans buying spree three years ago, so this is my 3rd pair I’ve had to replace this year.

  6. GuyGuidoEyesSteveDaveâ„¢ says:

    So I don’t need to worry about Denim Skirts? Will Bedazzling supply prices also plummet?

  7. SimplyStating says:

    Guess everyone will have to resort to Pleather.. There will never be a shortage of old rubber tires and plastics.

  8. evnmorlo says:

    What do they use about $.05 of cotton per pair? Now to be .10?

    • evnmorlo says:

      Actually if jeans weigh a pound, it’s more like .70 to $1.3 of cotton

      • catastrophegirl chooses not to fly says:

        i don’t actually go around weighing jeans, but according to the directions for dyeing fabric that i used many times it’s considered standard to assume denim jeans weigh approximately/average three pounds.

  9. FrugalFreak says:

    Thats it, push the fear mongering machine. All these “Go spend, prices going up” propaganda stories are for 1 purpose, to boost biz who want them dang luxuries. How dare you commoners not spend. learn this, prices will go up regardless, the story are manufactured excuses.

  10. suburbancowboy says:

    Buy American!

  11. MrEvil says:

    For the curious, cotton is up to $1.35/lb according to what my dad said the price was posted at the Cotton gin yesterday. Given that a pair of blue jeans weighs a few pounds it isn’t surprising they cost so much.

  12. Snaptastic says:

    Unless the thrift stores decide to up their prices, this won’t affect me. Heck, even if they do up the prices it won’t affect me because then I can just buy whatever they have on sale. (our Goodwill offers 30%-50% off a certain tag color as they try to clear inventory)

    I see no point in paying lots for a pair of jeans that are not broken in when I can get some nearly new ones that are broken in for only 2-3 bucks.

  13. AnthonyC says:

    Um… so depending on what kind of jeans you buy, the cost of the cotton in them is like 1-5% of the total cost. Similar figures hold for many of the things you buy in the grocery store.
    The cost of the underlying raw materials could quadruple, and we’d barely notice the price increase unless the companies involved use it as an excuse to raise their profit margins.

  14. Mark702 says:

    Industrial hemp was used to make jeans back in the day. The original Levi’s needed to be strong for the 49ers loading their pockets with heavy gold, and hemp is a longer, stronger fiber than cotton, making it a better material for clothing. Ironically, Oregon re-legalized industrial hemp in 2009 but the retarded Federal law still prevents American farmers from growing it.

    In an equally stupid move, we’re allowed to import hemp products from Canada, China, Europe and all the other countries who don’t have such stupid policies. Plus cotton growing in the US accounts for HALF of all pesticide use, where hemp doesn’t require it and hemp actually rejuvenates the soil, where cotton depletes it.