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Tips | Tactics | Insights from The Retail Owners Institute®
Tips| Tactics | Insights from The Retail Owners Institute(R) •
Friday, June 15, 2018

From The Co-Founders

Is this what's meant by "trickle down economics"?

The so-called "Tariff War" that's in the headlines these days seems to most of the public to be a yawner, a distant spitting contest. But to us, it seems much closer to home.

We're in the business of helping retailers and, when we can, providing a heads up when we see trends that may be impactful. The current trade disputes between the United States and most major countries in the world is one of those times. Retailers need a heads up.

First of all, every increase in costs are eventually paid for by consumers, e.g., your customers. It's an undeniable fact of economic life: costs are passed on.

So, when the Trump Administration announced on June 15 it will issue tariffs on an additional $50 billion of Chinese imports, the response from the retail community was prompt. It can be generally summarized in one word: "Yikes!"

Matthew Shay, President and CEO, National Retail Federation:
  • “Tariffs are taxes on American consumers, plain and simple. These tariffs won’t reduce or eliminate China’s abusive trade practices, but they will strain the budgets of working families by raising consumer prices."
Rick Helfenbein, President and CEO, American Apparel & Footwear Association:
  • "We remain deeply concerned. Any new tariffs present an immense burden for the American people. There are grave consequences to the use of tariffs. Congress needs to step in now to end this dangerous obsession. Tariffs are nothing but a hidden, regressive tax, plain and simple."
Michael Petricone, Senior Vice-President, Government & Regulatory Affairs, Consumer Technology Association:
  • "Tariffs go against the interest of the American people. The economy will respond to the president's tariff agenda by increasing the cost of goods that people use every day, harming the U.S. economy and sinking the stock market."
Here's one micro-example: earlier this year, 20% tariffs were applied to "laundry equipment." And today, prices for washers and dryers have increased 17%. (Trickle down tariffs, anybody?)

The current focus is United States versus China. Grim as that is, the big picture of U.S. tariffs versus the rest of the world – Canada, Mexico, the U.K., European Union, etc – is truly ominous. 

Remember, the prices retailers pay will go up. And those added costs must be covered somehow. Everybody's families will be paying more. Or having to cut spending in some areas (your stores?) when faced with higher prices elsewhere. 

Today, it may be a far-off spitting contest. But tomorrow or soon after, it's going to impact our customers, and thereby, impact  retailers.

Ready for a "Story Problem?"

You know that six customers will walk into your store next week and buy a particular item. You have two of those items presently in stock. 

How many more should you purchase to cover your needs?
  • Four? 
  • Six? 
  • Ten?
So, what's the right answer? 4? Or 6? Or 10? 

Careful; that's a trick question. There is not enough information to answer it. So the correct answer would be, "We don't know."

Go here on The ROI site for a free explanation of what else you need to know to answer that question, and how to get that information for yourself. 
Buying Plan Basics

Owners: How to PAY for it all?

The ROI's OWNERS CENTERThe ROI's OWNERS Center has an entire section dedicated to the financing issues of your retail business.

Specialized, retailer-friendly resources available only from The ROI.

Proven to help you deal with those issues most likely to keep you awake at night. 
  • Assessment tools
  • Online "What if...?" calculators
  • Self-paced training course
  • Empowering how-to webinars
  • Explanatory how-to articles packed with consulting insights
  • And more!
All focused on helping owners gain more control and peace of mind on the financial underpinnings of their business.

All ROI Members have unlimited access to this unique OWNERS Center resource. What are you waiting for?
Go to OWNERS Center
Remember: All ROI Members
have unlimited access to this unique OWNERS Center

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Should this retailer get a loan?
Friday June 15 – Thursday, June 21

Ready to be a lender for a fellow retailer?

Many retail owners have faced this situation at one time or another: a fellow retailer (perhaps in your community, or someone you know through a trade association, etc) asks for your advice.

Or - gulp! - asks for a loan!
  • How would you - or did you - respond? 
  • Wish you could have do-overs? 
There is a way you can help without ruining the friendship. Or your bank account!

This TOPICAL TUESDAYS Webinar of the Week, led by Pat Johnson and Dick Outcalt, Co-Founders of The Retail Owners Institute®, will show you an approach to take whenever you face those kinds of requests.

BTW, this approach works just as well if you are trying to decide whether to loan some money to your own  stores!

Be sure to take advantage of this practical how-to webinar, available only from The ROI. Free!
Friday June 15 - Thursday, June 21
ROI NEWS subscribers enjoy free access all week
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Retail Business Insights

Who's Your Bank? Really?!
Savvy retailers know to push vendors hard. Get them to help in all kinds of imaginative ways.

But, never ever pay them late. If you do, all their extra assistance could be voided by their CFO, who does not want to be serving as your bank! 

Have a bank be your bank, but NEVER use your vendors as a bank!

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"Turn on their financial headlights!"

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