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Everything posted by SNACR

  1. I would take that, and probably anything else he said, with a massive pinch of salt TBH.
  2. That knob-end spawn of Clare Rayner, off of The One Show, was telling a parliamentary select committee this week, using his extensive experience of being a child of someone with an existing media profile, that we should be paying more for food. When you can by a decent spanner for less than the cost of a single serving bag of potato crisps it doesn't tell you crisps are something difficult and complex to make, it tells you, for products made in this country, there are far too many fingers in the skimming pie.
  3. Well at least the candlestick makers are ok. It's good to hear that anyone who's anyone is off to the german discounters to buy a very limited range of groceries in a selection of brands no-one has ever heard of. Do you upload a video to Youtube of you doing it and then everyone donates money to charity, or something. This is a pure high-grade BS media driven narrative. Many whole counties will have barely a single independent bakers or fishmongers within their entire boundary.
  4. The odd move is not taking them in the first place. The <1.5% cost is massively offset by the increase in turnover. Worth considering also if customers spend less than a tenner on a debit card it could have resulted in less processing charges if they paid by credit card. I can understand the rationale of a car dealer not taking them but it makes no sense for a retailer and it's a thin case it would cut overheads. M&S didn't take them until about 2001 though. I would say there is case that, due to higher charges, Amex is not worth bothering with outside any locations where there might be international travellers.
  5. I agree the value of the marketing data generated by loyalty schemes is significantly over-egged. However, I think halving the points awarded is a strategically catastrophic move by Sainsburys that will bite them hard. Expansion of M&S and Waitrose must have hit them too. There were problems with Nectar being able to fund their operating costs, in the not too distant past, as they used interest on funds forwarded by scheme members to cover the admin.
  6. Sainsburys appear to be committing business suicide by issuing fewer loyalty points, surprised it hasn't been mentioned here.
  7. That definition is extraordinarily strange. It makes it sound like believing indigenous Africans share a chacteristic of dark skin is racist. I would have said something like discriminating against someone on the grounds of their race.
  8. It was/is true with retail it was very common for large instituitonal landlords to do almost swapses on retail property so the controlled the bulk of retail space within a town or catchment area, this would include out of town parks too. Once they had done so the position was leveraged to jack up rents. If such behaviour was engaged in a publicly visible way it wouldn't be tolerated. __________ Abundant free and convenient parking would not save High St retail. The absolute baseline for bricks and mortar retail is the cost of a single member of staff to stand there all day. For a small independent they would be lucky to even only double their money, on what they sell, and some will only achieve as little as a 50% markup to have any chance of competing with online and big players. That would mean looking at £1500 a week of sales, with no other costs, to keep the door open. Even that alone, if you got rid of rent and rates enitirely, will be enough to kill it. Once the redundancy money and dream of playing running a shop, out of a soap opera, dries up the decline will start getting ever sharper.
  9. This isn't really true, rents just don't function in that way. Many landlords are out of reach of enforcement action for non-payment of void business rates by being based at 'insert brass plate located on whatever British colony tax dodge island'. One council, god bless 'em, did pursue a landlord in the Jersey courts but the court ruled that Jersey courts do not enforce UK tax affairs in a Jersey fails to throw away its entire financial wellbeing to keep local council in diversity officers shocker. For landlords that don't escape liability they can contribute to business rates so it's not entirely true to say they're non-negotiable. In reality it's service charges that are less negotiable and what the landlord is very keen on avoiding. It's also the case that business rates aren't entirely set in stone if, particularly with something like a shopping centre, major rot is setting in action is taken. What was not uncommon, in the last recession, was the shopping centre owner going bust and the council having to step in as landlord to stop the town centre going to crap. Then faced with needing tenants themselves, and a barrage of prospective tenant responses that the rates are too high, then magically something is done. Typically, the councils would look to offload the centres and there was often an agreement on soft rates until rents reached a certain level. Ironically, rents at various examples of such centres did towards the end of the last boom get to levels that rates could be increased just before everything collapsed and said councils ended up with a failing shopping centre, from a bust landlord, on their hands again.
  10. British producers are being punished because of EU expansionism. Best solution would be to leave the EU and rebuild bridges as Putin's new best buddy in the West. You can go into all manner of contortions over the moral rights and wrongs of this but, if we don't, some other country will no doubt spot the opportunity. I really don't see, on any level, how British producers, going out of business, is an acceptable price to pay for EU politicians, who are unaccountable to the British electorate, continuing, their slightly unhinged, empire building.
  11. I suspect they would not want the electronic near instantaneous stampede of funds out of financial institutions into the BoE safe account at the first whiff of trouble. This, in fairness, to the previous government was always the issue to any alternative to not saving the banks. The massive problem now is to continue to maintain confidence nothing can ever not be rescued. This seems to lay the ground to an alternative scenario to this continuing state of affairs - effectively bankers knowing they can take what ever stupid risk they like, to line their pockets, and never go out of business. The problem is this still seems unmanageable. It doesn't seem to be mentioned but they would probably need to guarantee all monies in a solicitor's client account for starters and anyone can foresee near infinite scenarios that would require a King Solomon like judgement. Society has reached a point where it's virtually impossible to operate without a bank account and consequently there needs to be an obligation for everyone to be able to have a safe basic bank account, where all funds are guaranteed, and no charges can ever be accrued for failed payments etc. It needs to be controlled by the government if not directly run by it
  12. All the talk is about Tescos but Morrisons took a £170m hit on a daft investment in a online babycare retailer - bought for £70m and sold for £2m. On top of that, although now sold, they still retain liability on some store leases so there is the potential for further losses. Staggered the chief exec there hasn't walked the plank yet.
  13. The bad news just makes me suspect a corporate media meme. In reality the German discounters will never be more than niche operators for those prepared to go out of their way for the sake of thrift, for what ever reason. They aren't doing anything magical or special and neither is Tescos doing anything particularly different either. Supermarkets are a curious hobby for HPCers, and discounters will prosper in times of hardship, but the bulk of the population will just go to the one nearest to their house that matches their socio-economic group.
  14. The only people a minimum wage increase benefits is those sweeping the floors in the process automation sector - although the inevitable will catch up with them eventually.
  15. Sorry but that wouldn't correlate to anything I've witnessed with decades of experience in bricks and mortar retail.
  16. Things are very confusing these days. Female celebrities have phones full of vain nudey shots in front of the mirror and we're supposed to be outraged someone's put them on the internet. A tabloid entraps a politician into sending them a nudey photo and we're supposed to be outraged. I haven't got any nudey pictures of myself or anyone else on my phone but did send my girlfriend a picture of the dog doing something funny, a strange insect I found and a picture of a car tyre, so I knew what size to buy, should I be worried?
  17. One on the M5 at Bristol became an Asda and then became a Wal-Mart super center then back to Asda again after it didn't fly, I believe. French hypermarkets just wouldn't travel well here and the average Auchan looks like it's some sort of time portal to Soviet era Russia, these days. I really do think with the internet the days of traipsing round 100,000 sqft of aircraft hangar sized retail space to see if there's something you 'might' want to buy are gone for good - bad new for pension funds though. Have heard various rumours that this could be so bad it may result in the Tesco empire being broken up - probably with a load of store closures, I would suspect, if that did happen. The excessive expansionism of the last decade has left the brand almost tainted beyond redemption. Convenient, and not altogether justified, scapegoat for the carnage in the independent and wider bricks and mortar retail sector though.
  18. The government like him for his contract to supply uniform to the benefits underclass that masquerades as a sporting goods retail operation.
  19. On the plus side, you'll be a high earning, high social status demigod to your ten years younger wife.
  20. If I was in a situation I was looking to buy or take over another retail business essentially I would, pretty much, look at two things. The number of customers through the doors and the property leases and generally this would be by perusing the actual lease documents and viewing till audit rolls directly on a shop floor level. From those two things I can pretty much determine if there's a business to be had there or not. Everything else is just 'figure noise' items are seemingly far too fungible on a balance sheet level and I wouldn't entertain any spreadsheets that showed alleged profitability. So many agreements for goods and services will be so opaque as to be almost impossible to get to the bottom of what is actually being paid for something. If you pull out any random invoice, from a supplier, there might be a net price per item but there'll be so many rebates under marketing soft-money or any other number of different names it will be all but impossible to determine the actual profitability of a line.
  21. The logical conclusion is a lot of HMRC staff are up to their necks in BTL.
  22. Would think it's a bad thing from an enterprise point of view as I would imagine a lot that do go for the dream pub/shop/restaurant/other lifestyle business do so in their fifties. Possibly even more so with house buying becoming ever later.
  23. I do begin to worry that Bitcoin, rather than being a step away from state backed fiat currencies, is in fact a dangerous sleep walk towards a global single currency.
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