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Let us Assume
I was reading recently in a financial newspaper that it’s not all doom and gloom and that one can actually take advantage of the financial mess everybody seems to be in and make a lot of money. Reading further into the article it transpired that it was the usual economist’s mumbo jumbo where assumptions and ‘if’s and buts’ were key to success. In this case the assumption made was ‘you have some cash on the side…’.
However I did a bit of research of my own to see which industries/businesses were flourishing in Cyprus due to the meltdown and I came up with two, one directly and the other indirectly related.
Motor vehicle spare parts importers have seen their businesses increase tremendously over the past few years. Talking to one the other day he mentioned that he had been enjoying double digit increases the past three years.
I am pretty sure that few people would have thought about this but when one looks at the official statistics for car registrations it becomes so obvious. From 2008 to 2011 the number of cars registered in Cyprus has dropped by a staggering 43 per cent! This trend seems to be continuing as in January 2012 imports have dropped by 22 per cent compared to the previous year’s corresponding month.
People, feeling the pinch, have decided (and rightly so) that changing your car every couple of years is no longer a necessity. So as cars get more mileage, wear and tear begins to creep- in and who benefits? People who deal in spare parts.
Every now and again we hear of some kind of robbery, be it mugging, shoplifting or break-in. Such crimes have gone through the roof in the past couple of years with kiosks, bakeries, banks and houses being the favoured ‘hunting grounds’.
As such crimes increase just as the recession bites even harder one can safely deduce that the two are correlated. Who can benefit from this? Anyone who deals in security systems!
A few weeks ago the alarm system I have installed at home would just go off without any apparent reason. I called our supplier and he set me a date for May telling that it’s the best he can do and that I would probably see him before his wife!
Go back three years and ask yourself how many of the 1.600 or so kiosks, several hundred bakeries and God knows how many homes had such systems installed. Security system providers must be laughing all the way to the bank.
Both spare part dealers and security system providers benefitted in an indirect way from the recession, no ‘ifs and buts’ ‘no assumptions’. They were there at the right time and with the right product to sell.
My opening paragraph reminds me of a joke my economics teacher told us in high-school where three scientists were shipwrecked on a barren island. All they had to eat was hundreds of cans of tuna but they had to think up of a way to open them. The engineer tried to analyse how a sharp instrument at certain angle could force the cans open whilst the solar physicist indulged in his own solar meltdown theory. Hearing the two rambling on the economist interrupted them and said, ‘why are you complicating things, let us assume we have a can opener!’