As the pandemic recedes and we make our first forays back into the world, many of us are thinking about putting aside our sweatpants and picking up some new outfits. But I have some bad news, Clothes are getting more expensive.
ever since covid hits the percentage of clothes purchasedrop to 79%. which is the largest record declined.
Fashion labels began to panic. It was unclear how long the pandemic would last and, by extension, how long consumers would continue to not buy clothes. So many brands radically changed their operations, starting with worker layoffs and slashed prices on merchandise to unload existing inventory. Many canceled orders for the rest of the year, leaving overseas factories in a lurch. In turn, many factories had to fire garment workers.
at the same time, retail staffs demands for a higher pay.
even as some states have stopped providing additional benefits,
the job market is strong, and employees can be choosier about where they work.
what comes next?
With massive demand for clothing and not enough supply, many brands don’t need to discount products the way they did last year during the worst of the pandemic. That’s why prices this year are comparatively higher than they were last year, when brands were slashing prices to move inventory.
It’s still unclear whether this will happen, or how dramatically it will impact consumers’ wallets. But experts believe there’s a good chance clothing prices will keep increasing. And as Bitar points out, clothes are generally considered discretionary spending, so many consumers may simply buy fewer clothes as a result. But perhaps that’s not such a bad thing.
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