Friday, November 14, 2008

Binging and Purging Commodities

Retailers report an upsurge of "buyer's regret" in the U.S. with an expected $220 billion in returns this year, an unprecedented amount. One of the people interviewed in the NPR report on this phenomenon yesterday described herself happier upon returning items than she felt when originally buying the items.

I couldn't help thinking of how this parallels the bing/purge cycle for people who adopt extreme measures to keep their weight down. The buy, buy, buy ethic is running up against the realities of the financial crisis and a sharp contraction of credit and assuming the form for some of continuing to buy (it's hard to break a habit, after all), but shortly after binging, purging it in returns.

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