What will 2012 bring? Economic recovery or a double dip? A new President or … a double dip? Another tsunami? Revolt in Europe? No one can say with certainty. But here are 10 trends that consumers can take to the bank.
According to the shopping website dealnews, these five items will get cheaper this year:
- Wine Bottles priced at $30 or more are languishing on store shelves. To move stock, retailers will offer discounts.
- Car rentals Agencies have a glut of vehicles sitting idle on the lot. They will offer discounts to get those cars on the road.
- iPad 2 Technology always gets cheaper. This year many computer-related items like perfectly usable eBook readers and tablets will come down in price ahead of the iPad 3 release.
- 3-D TVs This relatively new technology will hit critical mass this year, and with many new designs and makers in the game, prices will fall to an irresistible level.
- Homes Home prices fell about 3% last year and should fall that much again this year. But the smart money is getting ready for a rebound after that, expecting prices to rise by 30% over the following 10 years.
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Here are five items that will get more expensive, according to dealnews:
- Airfare Fewer flights will lead to higher ticket prices. American Express predicts prices in North America will rise 5% for economy seats and 7% for business class.
- Food Wholesale food prices are rising, and the costs are being passed along to consumers. Food costs rose 6% last year and will rise again in 2012. These increases will be felt most at home, not in restaurants, where the costs are easier to absorb.
- Gas Fuel prices began inching up just before the holidays and are expected to again reach $4 a gallon at the pump.
- Shipping The U.S. Postal Service will raise rates by 4.6% next year while both FedEx and UPS are hiking small-package rates by 4.9%. It may be the end of common free-shipping features for online shoppers.
- Municipal fees To make up for budget shortfalls, local authorities will jack up the levy for everything from dog licenses to vehicle registration and parking. Look for local cops to write more tickets too.