It doesn’t really add up, does it? On the one hand you have German shoppers literally kicking, gouging and shoving their way into “consumer temples” like they did at Media Markt during Berlin’s Alexa shopping center grand opening recently (windows busting, tons of cops, 15 injuries, the whole nine yards), and then on the other hand you have the regular report ritual about how German consumers refuse to buy anything.

Well it doesn’t add up at first glance, maybe. Word is that a whole lot of this heavily discounted Media Markt stuff landed on eBay the following day. And now things slowly start coming into focus. We’re back to the German obsession with bargain-hunting again. And when you put this together with the German obsession to refuse to ever even think about much less touch his or her savings, incidents like this start to make sense, sort of.

It appears that unemployment can drop here all it wants to (and it has dropped dramatically during the past two years), retail sales keep on dropping, too. This may not matter all that much for the German economy as long as others do the shopping for them (think recklessly spending Americans), but now some experts worry that the expensive euro (and it has risen dramatically during the past two years) could start slowing down German exports and that homegrown consumer spending (or the lack of it) will not be able to take up the slack.

But other experts (like me) have more important things to worry about. You know, like keeping miles away from Media Markt and co. grand openings. And that is not as easy to do in Berlin as you might think. But stay away from them if you know what’s good for you, dear reader. That kind of  bargain-hunting can land you in the Krankenhaus (hospital) over here.

PS: Or maybe some of these guys are just trying to “screw” the system? Hardy, har, har.

Come and visit me at Observing Hermann…

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