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How did corporate retail contribute to the credit crisis of 2008 and 2009? This cartoon proposes one possible answer!
Working in retail, it happened more than once that we would, as directed, push our store's credit card on some unsuspecting customer, enticing them with 10% off their purchase, with the promise of no interest and no payments for a full year, and the suggestion that this was essentially a form of lay-away, only to find after their first major purchase that they could not pay back the money owed on the card due to an acute case of death. It happened mostly with the older customers. We'd get these octogenarians to sign up for a credit account, and they'd do the Christmas shopping on it, and then die a few weeks later.
So every time this happens, the company has a chance to recover the money from an estate...but often, there was no money there, or at least not enough. So each time such a credit risk was extended credit by our store, there was a good chance of losses in the thousands. The result of this, and of course many other economic factors, was a credit crisis unlike any most of us have seen in our lifetimes!
Just another example of the evil of corporate retail!