Any evidence of the weaker yen affecting camera gear prices?

Started May 31, 2013 | Discussions thread
Eamon Hickey
Veteran MemberPosts: 3,102
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rebates (in the U.S.)
In reply to noshea, May 31, 2013

Not as sure how things work in the UK and Europe, but in the U.S. the answer is rebates. When the value of the yen falls, if the camera companies decide to refund their windfall profits to the consumer, they almost always do so through rebates. (I believe similar programs are in effect in Europe -- Olympus, for example, just announced a series of new rebates in the UK, I believe.)

There have been a series of rebates throughout the first few months of this year from many camera manufacturers, including Nikon. The D800 evidently has a $200 "instant savings" rebate attached to it right now (going by B&H's D800 product listing), and there are evidently additional instant rebates attached to lenses and speedlites (going by Amazon's listings).

Canon, too, has much of their lineup on an instant rebate program right now. See here for details:

http://www.usa.canon.com/cusa/consumer/products?pageKeyCode=53

So the answer is yes, the effective price of a great deal of camera gear (in the U.S. and I'm guessing also in Europe) has fallen in response to the lower value of the yen.

noshea wrote:

Is this likely to be existing inventory that was bought wholesale at pre-devaluation prices and therefore doesn't reflect the present reality, or just retailers hoping for a bit of extra profit margin for every camera sold from new inventory by not lowering prices to reflect yen devaluation?

Well, here's the rub -- if a particular item is in high demand, and the company can continue to sell out its inventory without lowering the price, then they probably won't lower the price (and it's not the retailers who control this -- only the manufacturer (i.e. importer) benefits from the yen devaluation, so Nikon UK would have to lower its wholesale price on the D800 in order for UK retailers to be able to offer a lower price.)

So it's possible that Nikon UK is having no trouble selling all of its D800 allocation without lowering the price (whereas Nikon USA evidently decided to offer a $200 discount to keep its own inventory moving).

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