Is This Just A Rich People's Recession?

This year, we saw the first decline in online holiday sales since research firm comScore began monitoring them in 2001.

The good news? We can blame the rich.

Web metrics firm Hitwise says visits to luxury ecommerce sites from people with household incomes over $150,000 declined 12% this holiday season.

This while most other demographics performed normally this year.

For example, traffic to luxury sites from households with incomes between $100,000 and $149,999 was up about 10% y/y.

So where are the riches shopping instead of online? Hard to say, but probably somewhere they can spend the kind of cold hard cash you get from a pawn shop.

BusinessSheet: Diamond rings, Cartier watches, and Saks Fifth Avenue fur coats have become common collateral for loans at pawnshops.

Some pawnshop owners have lent 30% to 40% more money this year, and the number of first-timers has increased by 10%. Recently, one of the once well-to-do customers pawned his Movado Fiero watch with a diamond bezel for $2,500 to pay off his montly mortgage. Another hoped to get $9,000 for her fur coat to buy private-school uniforms for her child.

See Also:
Holiday E-Commerce Spending Even Worse Than Expected

Photo: Daquella manera

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