Apple didn't really try and crack the Chinese market with the iPad, it took ages for them to release it, but after 125,000 sales it was estimated that 1 million of them ended up in China through alternative channels and sold on the gray market. It was pretty popular.
Now Apple will without doubt be hitting that market hard with the 2G, and estimates suggest that a minimum of 3 million will be sold in China. At a retail price of $499 minimum, that is around $1.5bn worth of iPads without taking into consideration the more expensive models (not Apple's share of course). Sales could even far exceed 3 million, if success in America and Europe is to go by. 15 million iPad 1G tablets have been sold globally, this could be huge in China.
Whilst I appreciate that Apple is a globalised business, and that iPads are not manufactured in the US, American investors (institutions and individuals) still make hold a majority stake in the business and the company still employs a very large number of highly skilled Americans, a sharp increase in Apple profits would boost markets, push up pension funds, etc.
Hell, if Tiger Woods can affect the markets by playing a couple of rounds of golf then the iPad can. It's about time somebody sold something back to China though hey?
Yup - we are going to see a growing disconnect between Main street and Wall street. The stock market no longer needs the US consumer - this is not good news for any but the top 2% of the country. Whatever trickles down from the massive creation of money and growth of the Chinese consumer market is not going to have substantial impact at the bottom. This is why the car companies are doing quite well thanks you. Take teh bailout money, develop a market overseas and fire all your expensive US workers - it is the fault of Obama and the Unions.
Obviously the rich will be the biggest gainers, they always are. But what about the funds? We almost all have pension funds, which are big investors in the Fortune 500 companies.
There is something slightly ironic about borrowing from the Chinese to fund an addiction to Chinese made goods, and then actually selling something back to the Chinese, only for that money to serve the Chinese in the form interest payments.
The Chinese really have shown themselves to be the masters of business haven't they? Which other country would effectively recieve iPads which they were paid to make as an interest payment on the money that they lent America to pay for iPads that they made.
Depressing really, same with the UK though, only we sold them half of our gold at the market bottom which makes things even worse.
One of the biggest problems we have with China is that they have devalued their currency to the point of stranglehold on us. If our government was smart, it would demand that China revalue its currency to be on par with ours.
Mark, you know about this stuff.... if China really is keeping its currency artifically low in order to effectively export unemployment to other countries, then why aren't western countries using techniques to counter this? In other words, the same techniques? Whatever those techniques are? And, do you sense that the Chinese just work bleedin hard? Most of the people I know piss around on fb at work all day creating inefficiencies and generally being useless, you wouldn't see that in China.
China has opened their currency up to trading recently.
http://bankproperties.com/china-opens-t … customers/
There are far less restrictions on pollution and wage levels in China than there are in western countries. They are exporting unemployment - we are exporting our pollution.
Sooner or later we will run out of places to exploit - then the fun starts. But for now - China is big enough to keep the robber barons satisfied I think. It makes no difference to them where the goods are made, or who is unemployed. I just watched France dump the Baltics like a hot potato when the car industry needed bailout money. They shut factories over night and have been bussing Romanians back home for months.
Things aren't going to get any better in the UK with The Conservatives in power, seeing as the 2% to which you refer and the fathers of the politicians (and the party donors) are very much the same people. In other words, they have no interest in looking after the interests of the common man on the street - only in introducing policies which benefit the minority. It is actually said that The Conservatives tend to benefit the top 7% of the country at the expense of the remaining 93%, it's not hard to keep enough of that 93% stupid enough to remain at the forefront of British politics.
I am just gutted that New Labour ended up as pathetically weak as they did, their decline seemed to coincide with the move towards Tony Blair's egotistical search for a war legacy. They started off well, with the introduction of a minimum wage, before pumping Chinese money around willy nilly to win votes (which seems transparent to me) and creating restrictive laws which hindered small business. The problem is that The Conservatives have no intention whatsoever of encouraging the creation of private jobs, they see high unemployment as a means of cheap labour for the corporations that they control stakes in or are in bed with. They get to dilute the minimum wage in real terms, by pointing to high unemployment as a indicator that the country can't afford to increase it in monetary terms, whilst their brothers and old Eton chums get to benefit from the growth in their bottom line. Surely the way to encourage consumer spending is to increase the levels of peoples disposable income? Distribution of a higher proportion of wealth from corporation to floor level employee is the only way that will happen on a scale which would benefit the small business.
This country is fucked, and all it would take to fix it (in my opinion) is a living wage regulation for large corporations (e.g. Tesco), a reduction in corporate taxes for companies in secondary industries, the building of nationalised nuclear power facilities to end a reliance on European energy imports (or at least the German and French owned plants in this country), a vast improvement in infrastructure (railways and roads), and a willingness to start using our 200 years worth of coal reserves (not even dirty coal, unlike China). Sounds a bit socialist I know, but it was capitalism that got us into this mess, the only way out is discrete protectionism.
Why didn't labour ban self-service checkouts in supermarkets? If they are really left wing? Why didn't labour prevent the building of fully robotic warehouses to any business which sold non-British made goods? Argos have two huge distribution centres which are almost entirely non-staffed (to pick and pack their Chinese goods). You are right, the little man is surplus to requirements.
I think it makes absolutely zero difference who is in power. They all dance to the central bank and robber baron's tune. This artificial left/right argument simply gives us the hope that things will be different next time. We are daft enough to swallow it and - occasionally - the upwards bubble inflation takes a few along for the ride.
Also - I see no difference between the US, the UK and France - we have all ended up at the same place - capitalism in the UK and socialism in France. What have we got? A debt burden that crushes all the small people and too much government - I mean way too much government.
Look at Spain - that will be the next bailout. 20% - official - unemployment. Official - goodness knows what the real figure is. 50% of the workforce is employed by the Government Inc. So - best case scenario - you have 30% supporting 70% as the English are out of cash - they are just stuck there with a house worth less than they owe on it and a 30% drop in income.
I know somebody in that situation, they have paid nearly a decade of mortgage payments and interest rate rises have resulting them paying more money per month for the house than when they started (in real terms and in monetary terms) which they now hold -10% equity in. In order to attract a buyer they would need to sell for £30000 less than the level of debt that they hold, in other words they have a choice between effectively paying their mortgage for the rest of their lives or stumping £30000 in cash to buy themselves out of it. I bet a timeshare never seemed so attractive, it would have been cheaper! Italy and Portugal are also heading towards the need for a bailout, apparently the EU simply can't afford to bail them all out, we are going to have to let one of them fall and cross our fingers that the ripple doesn't turn into a tsunami. If The Guardian are to believed it would cost 420 billion euros to bail out Spain, it has to end somewhere, they are going to have to effectively become insolvent.... I don't know where the domino would stop, where does it stop? How do we get out of this?
I wish that I was more knowledgeable in the area of international finance, all I see at the moment is effectively every country in the world crippled by debts asides from China, India and Brazil. What happens next? The Euro zone collapses? What then? Mile long lines of people waiting to withdraw huge piles of worthless cash? Does having a seperate currency protect us in any way from that in any way? Should I be buying a shotgun to protect myself from looting when the riots hit the UK?
The trouble with the 'way too much government' is that while everyone in the UK seemed to agree that government cuts were much needed, they are now squealing because they are actually happening. Local councils are cynically cutting libraries, public loos, swimming pools etc while their Chief Exec is still earning £200,000 + and legions of back office non-jobbers are still spending all day on Facebook.
And despite the supposed cuts, the deficit is still going up! A complete shake up of our economy is needed, and we need to start looking at things in a whole new way.
I know. I have friends in local government - they are losing 30% of the workers (none of the bosses - they got a rise) and cutting out things like lollipop men.
Change is coming - lets hope it is not too violent.
Personally I think that we just need to pull out of Afghanistan and Iraq immediately, we may have a moral obligation to finish the job but the longer we are there the bigger the problem we create (at huge cost), build some nuclear power stations so that the French and Germans don't keep putting our energy bills up at twice the rate of their own, leave the EU and save us the $10bn a year that we pay them (and the countless more $bn per year that their courts cost us), and cut fuel duty to encourage economic activity and the movement of people.
Should we be angry at the closing of libraries and public loos? Of course we f'in should, The Conservatives sit there blaming Labour (and sure, they deserve some blame) but are still condoning and overseeing an illegal war which none of us agreed with and which has cost us in excess of £20bn already. Its time that we started to follow the Scandinavian model and stand alone, as an independant state, once again. At current we are part of a union which the public doesn't want, spending money on a war which nobody wants, whilst sinking in a big pile of debt (most to China) which was borrowed to pay for all this crap.
It is a travesty, and I simply wish that I had learnt a second language as a kid, such as Norweigen or German so that I could move to Switzerland.
Totally agree with you Ryan - but we live in a country where we still blame Thatcher, so Labour has got at least another 10 years of blame to go, then it will be the Coalitions turn.
We need to stop blaming, start doing, and politicians need to grow a pair and get their snouts out of the trough
In fact, should I be holding my cash in another currency altogether? Or perhaps I should be holding gold bullion and protecting it with a shotgun?
Trillions of Dollars/Euros/Pounds have been printed - all of it has gone into propping up the financial markets. All of it - this is why the stock market goes up - the Government Inc commits itself to debts to the Central Banks and agrees to pay it back by taxing the citizenry.
No one knows what to do. Sure - gold is good - but have you seen the price? Cash is good too - unless the currency completely collapses - in which case the least of your worries will be how much a loaf of bread is in the old, useless currency.
The Chinese have a saying - "May you live in interesting times." - We are doing that - I did not expect to see it, but we have a major change coming. I just hope the Bankers do not use their usual technique for ridding us of the restless and angry young men. Or - if they do - it is done away from my back door. Hard to see which conflict will be first. Jesus v Mohamed The Final Smackdown or What do we do with all the unemployed yobs on the street? Putting the school leaving age up to 18 will just delay the problem for a few years.
That's just some kind of stupid in my opinion. We don't have enough teaching staff now - and in some schools (like my daughter's) there's no way to develop the schools footprint - so where are the kids that will stay on going to be?
Abbie's school needs the year 11's to leave to make room for the intake of year 7's. Plus our schools are already infested with what we call Cover Supervisors - non-qualified teaching staff that supervise compulsory education.
The law was changed back in the Autumn of 2009 to allow for the use of such supply staff - presumably because there's a lack of qualified teaching staff.
I'm glad my youngest is leaving school in a few months - she's had enough supply staff teaching her as it is. It's not an ideal learning environment - no continuity, a lack of understanding of the subject being taught by the supervisor (they're floated wherever they're needed) and to my mind it makes a mockery of the fact that teachers have to spend years learning before they're classed as professionals.
Whilst a supervisor may feel offended at what I've written - the fact is that they're not specialists in the subject that they teach, so how can that be a good thing?
The mind boggles at some of the shortfalls already in our education system, without burdening it by raising the leaving age to 18.
@ Ryan - we're not at war with Afganistan. Troops are out there because they're building a gas pipeline through the country. My ex-partner spent three years out there doing just that.
He said the troops were out there to protect them - the terrorist stuff is real ... they do attack etc. But the real reason they're out there is not for the fight against it, it's for money.
As for moving to a foreign language speaking country - go for it. You don't need the ability to speak the language - you will pick it up once there - I did. And if I can master enough Portuguese to manage I'm sure you will pick up German
Not much better here, as I am sure you have heard. The IMF is squeezing the life out of the Greek people and the multinationals are moving in. All that the IMF is interested in is raping the country so that the fat cats don't lose their money - if normal people starve in the process, then they seem to have little concern.
This area is very vibrant, with a multitude of family-owned stores and a unique high-street. Sadly, the likes of Carrefour and Lidl are sweeping those away, and we will end up with the same, bland, generic high streets found in almost every town in the UK.
In Sparta, I have seen old people begging and looking in bins for something to eat. Crime and suicide are rising - things are not looking too good. I can imagine that Athens is infinitely worse - try living on a 300-400 Euro per month pension there.
Time to go back to the Drachma - The Euro has failed. I quite like the idea of paying back the parasitic bondholders with truckloads of 100,000,000,000 Drachma notes
Not sure if this tablet is from Chinese or US spares but we'll see how this little thing can change the market.
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