For almost every part in the iPhone, Apple has another supplier lined up and ready to go. That’s a good practice in case anything goes wrong, and also to give the company negotiating power when it wants to cut costs. Apple is putting that backup plan into action now, as suppliers say that the company is out to lower its cost on parts as smartphone sales have slowed down. [More]
supply and demand
Supply and demand: the push and pull of time, money, materials, and desire that influences the price and availability of all commodities. An overreaction to a shortage today can result in a glut a few years from now, and vice versa. So how did we end up with the current overabundance of cheese, meat, and grains in the U.S.? [More]
While Sears struggles to get customers into its stores and lost $1.7 billion last year, the retailer is also encountering problems in keeping its shelves stocked with merchandise. The company’s vendors are reportedly nervous to ship to the retailer given its poor financial results and touchy cash flow situation. Vendors are asking Sears to pay their bills sooner in exchange for a discount. This ties up tens of millions of extra dollars’ worth of capital up at a time. [More]
There’s less off the attention-deficit disorder drug Adderall available to the public than there used to be: some even call it a shortage. The company blames the FDA, which has limited the total amount of the drug manufactured: it is, after all, an amphetamine and a controlled substance. Manufacturer Shire has responded to these limits by… hiking the price and making fewer discounts available to consumers.
In Florida, acres of delicious strawberries are starting to ripen, and… being left to rot and plowed under. Thanks to cold weather at just the right point of the winter growing season, berry crops are so bountiful that it’s more cost-efficient to let the berries rot than it is to pay anyone to pick them.
When Pilgrim’s Pride, a processor of chicken, filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy earlier this year, did it decrease chicken wing production? Are we on the verge of a chicken wing crisis?
The New York Times says that due to the recession there is a glut of available lobster, which is driving down prices.
The New York Times has an interesting article today about the rising specter of deflation — in which a lack of demand causes prices to fall. Falling prices sounds like a good thing for consumers who have been battered with rising costs over the past year — but experts agree — deflation is nothing but bad news.
Recently, after numerous complaints of serious illness from popcorn workers and one complaint of illness from a consumer, ConAgra and Pop Weaver removed diacetyl from its microwave popcorn and now proudly announce to their customers that their product is diacetyl free. Kraft, on the other hand, decided that now would be a good time to introduce a brand new diacetyl-based butter flavor into the market.
The usual cast and crew of operation greymarket are out of luck with the iPhone, according to the Boston Globe. Unlike Nintendo and their still-scarce Wii, Apple appears to be meeting demand. From the Boston Globe:
David Flashner thought he had it wired: Buy two iPhones last Friday when they first went on sale, keep one, and sell the other at a profit so big it would pay for most of the first one.
GapKids recently featured a white, crocheted string bikini you’d likely see Anna Kournikova wearing on the cover of the Sports Illustrated swimsuit issue. The bikini was for a 12-month-old.
There’s a much deeper story here, and it begins with Oyster, a respected, self-made businessman who turned a single station into Oyster Petroleum, a profitable firm in Redwood City. Oyster is nobody’s fool. Don’t think he isn’t well aware that the Chevron station across the street is selling regular for 70 cents less.
Lately, he says, he and his employees have been receiving a lot of complaints from customers. Although he tries to explain his situation, people don’t want to hear it.
“Demand still appears to exceed supply, and we believe that shortages could persist through the remainder of the year, including the key holiday period,” said Colin Sebastian of Lazard Capital Markets, in a report by Next-Gen.biz.