Monday, June 05, 2006

Someone stop the price gouging yellow shirt dealers!

Yes, apocalyptic price gouging has now reached Thailand, where now-popular yellow shirts are all the rage.

From the article: "Suppliers say they're running out of shirts, and buyers complain they are being gouged by sellers."

As expected, when people want something but they have to pay too much for it, they cry foul and petition the government for action. Heeding their fellow citizens' pleas for yellow shirts, Thailand's Deputy Commerce Minister Preecha Lohaphongchana lays it on thick: "If we find traders selling shirts for an excessive profit, they will face legal charges with punishment of up to a seven-year jail term or a 140,000 baht ($3,675; euro2,834) fine." Take that, economic freedom ranking!

This, of course, is nothing more than an increase in demand for yellow shirts. Break out the Econ 101-- prices and quantity will go up. It's going to take a bit for the market to respond with more shirts; of course, with the prices forced lower and the profit incentive reduced, it's going to take a little bit longer.

The real question: Aside from the supply vs. demand shock, is this really any different than the gas situation here in the United States?

No comments: