Industry Analysis & Industry Trends
Due to its countercyclical nature, the Thrift Stores industry enjoyed a level of high demand during the recession. The industry sells secondhand goods at low prices and thus benefits from periods of weakened consumer purchasing power. During the five years to 2012, unemployment jumped to a high of 9.6%, while per capita disposable income declined for the first time in two decades. Furthermore, the United States' poverty rate increased from a pre-recessionary level of 13.0% of the population to a high of 15.3% in 2010. As such, demand for low-priced housewares and apparel jumped up. IBISWorld estimates that industry revenue increased 14.2% in 2009, bringing the five-year average growth to 3.5% between 2007 and 2012.... purchase to read more
Industry Report - Industry Investment Chapter
The Thrift Stores industry has a low level of capital intensity. For every dollar spent on labor, the typical operator allocates only $0.09 toward capital equipment. Capital expenses for this industry include fixtures and fittings, cash registers and point-of-sale systems. Over the five years to 2012, thrift stores' reliance on technology has increased, bumping up the industry's capital-to-labor ratio. Retailers in general have increasingly adopted computer scanning technology, which helps maximize efficiency and minimize costs. Point-of-sale systems, in particular, help operators track inventory.
Labor costs, on the other hand, are a significant part of this industry, accounting for nearly 25.0% of annual revenue... purchase to read more