Which Industries Continue to Thrive Despite Slowing Economy?

Dennis Faas's picture

Despite a slow economy steadily tightening its grip around the automotive industry, several other industries continue to thrive this holiday season. The two markets most resilient to recession seem to be movies and electronics.

Despite thinner wallets and massive layoffs, Apple's venerable iPod continues to fly off shelves this Christmas. In a recent statement to investors, analyst for Kaufman Bros. Shaw Wu admitted he was stunned that Apple's popular device continues to be sold out through many online vendors. Amazon, perhaps the most popular online source for electronics, has a three to five week wait period for those interested in buying the $229 8 GB or $299 16 GB versions of the iPod touch. In other words, it's so popular that many people will be waiting until January to get their Christmas gifts.

Even retailers who do most of their business in-store, like Best Buy and Wal-Mart, are experiencing iPod shortages, according to Wu. Right down the line, from Touch to Nano to Shuffle, quantities are getting slim. (Source: businessweek.com)

"Frankly, we find these sell-outs on iPods surprising given how difficult the macroeconomic environment is, putting a crimp on consumer spending," Wu remarked.

Although sales of the iPod are down about 5 per cent since last year at this time, they're up 90 per cent over the previous three month period. As a result, Apple shares continue to rise, up 2.6 per cent to $2.42.

Americans appear to be drowning their worries in both music and movies. According to Reuters, Hollywood is actually experiencing an increase in ticket sales over last year -- some say growth might even be in the double-digits. "We're approximately two-thirds of the way through the quarter, and we are having a very good fourth quarter this year compared to last year as an industry," said Regal Entertainment Group CEO Mike Campbell. (Source: yahoo.com)

Although the iPod sellouts are a bit surprising, movie sales have traditionally gone up as the economy goes down. It's no surprise, really: given workplace worries, fantasy flicks like 'Twilight' and 'Madagascar 2' offer an escape from the everyday, a journey that seems more and more important to Americans all the time.

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