Essential reading for retailers and suppliers in the home improvement market

Consumers getting a better deal

Published: 2 April 2008
Research reveals that the cost of household goods has fallen by nearly 50% since the 1970s.
Consumers getting a better deal
A survey carried out by accountants Pricewaterhouse-Coopers (PwC) revealed that high street prices have almost halved in the last 35 years.

Argos' prices have fallen 47% since its launch in 1973 when a fan heater in its original 250-page catalogue was priced at £7.60. Given the impact of inflation, the heater would now cost £51, however, a similar item has an rrp of just £12.99 today.

The biggest price cuts have been seen in the last 10 years with retailers taking advantage of technological advancements and the cheap manufacture of products overseas.

Mark Hudson, head of retail and consumer at PwC said: "What we purchase now compared to the 1970s is much cheaper, that's why you see four or five televisions in a house now."

He added: "Around 90% of the deflation we have seen has been in the last ten years. Manufacturing costs have come down and we have also benefited from the intense competition among retailers and the increasing importance of the internet. Consumers have so much information at their fingertips."

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