Pawn Shop economic outlook - WALB.com, Albany News, Weather, Sports

Pawn Shop economic outlook

Novemer 18, 2002

Albany -- It's a busy time for pawn shops. With the holidays approaching, lots of people are buying and selling at pawn shops. And a weak economy is boosting business even more.

Albany Furniture and Pawn owner Gary Luper says people are having tough economic times. Luper said "The economy is a little bit slow. We talk to a lot of people in the construction business. They're coming in pawning their tools."

Georgia Loan and Pawn owner Todd Faircloth says his customers are struggling to make ends meet. Faircloth said "Quite a bit. You get a lot more nice merchandise now, because it's gotten real cheap."

Some experts say pawn shops give a true picture of a community's economic shape. In tough times more people are trying to sell their goods for money. More people are buying at pawn shops, trying to stretch every buck.

Luper said "We're the lender for the little guy. He needs 50 dollars to pay his power bill. He needs 40 to 50 dollars to buy the battery for the car, and we get more and more of that right now." 

Pawn shop owners in Albany report their business is busy. More people are trying to pawn items, while most store owners say sales are mixed.  A lot of people are looking, few are buying. Faircloth said "We're seeing people not spending as much as they did before 9-11. It's affected peoples spending habits. How? They're just a lot tighter with their pocketbooks than what they used to be."

 With the holidays coming, pawn shop owners know their business will be brisk. Faircloth has moved his shop closer to the Albany Mall. Faircloth said "Yea, I think we can compete."

Pawn shop owners say tough economic times are showing, even with the holiday season approach. Gary Luper says a lot of people are pawning items to pay their heat bills.

posted at 3:34 by jimw@walb.com

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