CE Products and the Stimulus Package

March 13, 2008

Hear that off in the distance? It’s the sound of cash registers going *ka-ching*. According to research conducted by the CEA one in five tax-payers will cumulatively spend up to five billion dollars on consumer electronics; as a direct result of the economic stimulus package signed by President Bush last February.So what type of items does the CEA (Consumer Electronics Association) expect to be most popular with consumers using their rebate checks? Computers, flat-panel televisions and mobile-phones (iPhone sales should see a sharp up-tick) lead the pack, with various other CE products bringing up the rear.

The “CEA found that consumers will spend their rebate check within the first two months of receiving it and 74 percent will spend the money within the first four months.” Individual tax-payers can expect “rebate” checks up to $600 while couples who filed jointly can look forward to $1200 rebates and up to $300 per child in the household at time of filing. The government should begin mailing out the checks in May, finishing up sometime in August.

Now here’s the part that might sound odd coming from a guy who makes his living in the home theater, while I might catch a few of those government pennies falling from the sky, I can’t exactly say as this news makes me feel all warm and fuzzy inside either. Listen I know the stimulus package was meant to be a direct, shot-in-the-arm to the nation’s economy and rightfully so, we could all use a little help in righting the woes of the housing industry but mobile phones?

Honestly who in 2008 that needs a mobile phone doesn’t already have one? Hell I’m hardly one to preach but I’ll tell you what I’m doing with my rebate, I’m paying off a credit card with it and hiding the SOB from myself. Don’t worry I’ve got a great system, I tell someone who can’t use it where it is and 9 times out of 10 they forget where it was when I ask. The more cards I lose this way just gets me that much closer to being debt-free.

This is proof positive we live in cushy times, here we are in the middle of a relativity serious housing correction and a huge chunk of the people who are about to receive a $600 check want a cell phone, gotta love America. Seriously though no love lost, this was all in good fun but I will say this to you under-thirty-somethings: There is no phone, blackberry, iPod, gadget or just about any other material possession in life as important as ones home, something to ponder on the way to the bank with that rebate check.

Posted by Bryan Greenway | | Filed Under Commentary