How will the COVID-19 pandemic affect sites like Audiogon?


One would think that with social distancing and shelter in place policies, there has never been a better time for upgrading and enjoying your audio system.   But is now the time to buy and sell?  The mass unemployment and economic distress accompanying the pandemic seems certain to undermine what is essentially a luxury market encompassing both gearheads and music lovers?  What effects on buying and selling audio gear — both short and long term — can we foresee?
merlin
The changes that are now and will comes are too big for most to figure out now....I cannot imagine to speak about my tweaks  with the same enthusiasm now....Solidarity and speaking to one another.... Listening music is the way to go trough that... But buying luxury no for most....
If one has the spare cash there is likely not going to be a better time to buy.
selling? Pretty dire even if a hot item.

With the spare time at home folks have right now I would say tweaks would be big time spenders.
Things that require little capital, Just time.
like removing and cleaning all cable connections.
rerouting that rats nest of wires you think is out of site out of mind behind your rack.
working on speaker placement.
cataloging all your music via Discogs for example.

lots of little items to keep you occupied 
Audio spring cleaning. How timely. 😄
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NOBODY needs to hear more of this bad news.HELLO !!!!!!!
Stereo5, I am very sympathetic to what you are saying.  Many people in this hobby are also in the most threatened demographic.  It will be a hard slog.  I understand and wish you, and everyone in your situation, a healthy outcome.
I worry about my wife, kids, other family and friends.
I would think if you really cared instead of investing $10s of thousands in a stereo system you would have bought life insurance instead to insure their continued well being after your gone.





@stereo5 : We also are old, and we're having groceries delivered, to reduce contact with others. If that's available in your area, you might consider it.
Not being delivered here but are put at curbside at the grocery stores for us to pickup.
stereo5, I concur wholeheartedly. I'm beginning to wonder if resources aren't already being allocated according to hierarchy, status, and fealty to those in charge. I wouldn't put it past them.

They did it with their stocks so it would be foolish to think otherwise.

jetter, that was an incredibly sick and mean thing to say. 

All the best,
Nonoise
Oh lordy
Yet again we get seriously off topic although I must admit my post was as well to a degree.

How will covid -19 affect sites like audiogon was the OP basis.

Do not think anybody got to that part yet.... lol.
nonoise, I am a very sensitive person, but the constant liberal drivel about how F. U. our response has been doesn't sit well with me.  I am an independent, so no bias one way or the other.  A month ago no one really saw this hitting the U.S. like it did, arm chair quarterbacking is always 20 20.  Otherwise a lot of us would have deep 6'd our stock holdings. 


I have read every post that stereo5 has written over a lot of years with interest, but when I read when anyone posts " The government cares more about propping up big corporations than ordering companies to start to manufacture what is needed to fight this."  I lose faith in the author. 

Again, sorry, and I am an independent.
And honestly, I hope stereo5 comes through, and the rest of us, A OK.
I agree with Uber, this will create a buyers market. Personally I hope no one has to sell to raise survival funding. I really hope the real end game here is that, we are all safe, healthy and if facing additional time off. Spend it getting onto your music collection and rediscovering the real reason you bought that album. The drum solo, guitar lick, bass line or maybe the album cover👁

IMHO, we are all going thru this, rather than focus on the problems we cannot fix. So instead of worrying, enjoy as much as we can while taking the necessary precautions. Whether the flood comes or not, the only real option we have is to be mentally sandbagged in our most vulnerable spots.

and a little prayer never hurts
Jetter
it was actually pretty easy to watch and predict when this was going to devastate the stock market.
Sure I waited a day or two too long but I moved the majority of my 401k holdings into fixed cash bonds just prior to the grand slam.
Yes I lost some $ but not dreadful.

And no I am not a broker or connected, just observant and reasonably intelligent no matter what some here think.

So goes without saying that it was also pretty likely to hit just the way it has. I had no need to rush out and buy toilet rolls... lol. We already had them!
Uber, the day I was going to move my 401k the market went up 5,000 points, and I was as they say "lulled into complacency".   Am thinking tomorrow I am moving to a money market.  Still in a strong gain position, but not like before.
NOBODY needs to hear more of this bad news.HELLO !!!!!!!
I have no problem reading about it. Don’t read these comments if they hurt your sensibilities.

nonoise, I am a very sensitive person, but the constant liberal drivel about how F. U. our response has been doesn’t sit well with me. I am an independent, so no bias one way or the other. A month ago no one really saw this hitting the U.S. like it did, arm chair quarterbacking is always 20 20. Otherwise a lot of us would have deep 6’d our stock holdings.
I actually did know this was coming to where I live. Santa Barbara, CA. I spoke with my wife in January and told her we need to be careful since there are a lot of kids from the university living in our neighbourhood. I also cancelled my squash games at the university rec center in January since I was afraid of bring some virus home to my kid. You do not need to be a genius to see this coming.

If you do some research and learn the causes of the Italian outbreak it is easy to see the co-relation. Similar to how Zika went to Brazil.

The second thing I said about Covaid-19 was that the biggest concern I had was the buffoon in charge in the USA. So far I am 2 for 2.

Saying all of this I am optimistic about the situation since people are doing their best to be smart, at least where I live.

With regards to the OP question about how it affects A’gon. I was getting ready to spend about $50K+ wasting money on an audio system. That is a big no go today.

@jetter "Otherwise a lot of us would have deep 6'd our stock holdings"   

You mean like Senators Loeffler and Burk, right?

As for this site, I think it'll do fine. If it could weather the immediate post-9/11 and the 2008 recession, it should pull through this.
Jetter
That is likely the couple of days I waited too long myself, lulled as you say.
Or being greedy
Take your pick.
Still I could be a lot worse off than I am right now and for that I am eternally grateful.

I know there are many not so fortunate, my next door neighbor is 80 not that you would say so by looking at him and how active he is but, he told me he is near bankruptcy right now. He was asleep at the wheel unfortunately .
And he is not taking many precautions despite my warnings to him.
Very worrying.
As I am sure there are many more examples of older stubborn people out there, been there, done that, seen it all before.
Not a good time here in the USA at all.
yyzsantabarbara, my daughter received her PHD in chemistry from Univ Cal Santa Barbara.  I was a Seal and Huntington Beach guy until moving to Vermont a lot of years ago..

I actually had a more optimistic viewpoint on how all of this was going to play out.  In fact, until a few days ago I was thinking it would be gone by spring.
I had no idea of how long this would last. 

The following article is about 3 years old.
https://www.cnn.com/2017/04/07/health/flu-pandemic-sanjay-gupta/index.html



I am no expert, at all, but I have been tracking the world wide infection rates and I listen to a lot of experts.

So, given I get paid $0 for my opinion, here’s’ what I see:

Unemployment in the US will top 40% this year. The amount of disposable income will contract to unbelievably small numbers. The duopoly of power will fight over who to protect and who to support.

We are going to approach having 10% of the world population infected and a large number of that sick over the next 60 days. That threatens economic recovery, and supply chains. Food supplies will remain fairly stable, until parts and equipment breaks down, and depending on how quickly our food producing states lock down.

The better we handle the crisis, the longer it will last. Flattening the curve will keep the hospitals available for non-covid health issues. More people will survive, and return to productivity, but also, the more time on the calendar this will take. The alternative which some advocate for, ignore the curve, take the hit, leads to a broken country and world, economically.  I don't advocate that.

If there is any gear you have you were thinking of selling, it is too late. No one outside of the top 1% is buying, but now is better than in 2021. Lots to be said for getting rid of equipment and lightening your load.


If you must purchase used equipment during this troubled time, consider that liquidity problems have given the USD a big boost against the Euro and GBP.  The USD is getting surprisingly close to parity in FX.
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@jetter You lucky guy. I would kill to move to Vermont!
Back to the Topic....I think with more time at home, many of us will be increasing our time reading these forums and working on tweaks to our systems as a way of simply getting away from the bad news. In times of crisis, bartering increases historically so I would think used gear selling will be on the upswing? I know I spent some hours today looking for a used amp to replace mine when I send it off for service/upgrades.  I also spent time today reviewing the "what are you playing" postings for fresh ideas to explore new material.  My father is turning 95, fought WWII in France.  When we talked today he mentioned that he has never seen anything like this in his lifetime and hopes that people will join together and we will see a return to polite behavior that has been lost in recent times. People react in two ways to extreme pressure, and instead of blaming I will join on the side of solutions.  In the long run, sites like Audiogon should thrive with increased interest in music at home, instead of live venues.  Thankfully this place has for the most part been free of political discussion. 
@erik_squires   

Unemployment in the US will top 40% this year.

While I don't disagree that things are going to get super ugly on unemployment, I think your 40% is a bit over the top.  Even during the worst of the Great Depression unemployment topped at 25%. 

@simao Thanks, its a great place, you just have to be able to enjoy the winters, skiing, snowshoeing, skidooing and the like.  I am looking out the window and still have patches of snow.  I love it here.

Hey stereo5, I have been reading your posts for 15 years or more years, and I assumed a familiarity that I probably should not have, sorry man, wishing you and yours the total best.
George
@jetter The girl I dated before I met my wife still lives in Chittenden and I spent many a happy winter and summer weekend up there.
While I don't disagree that things are going to get super ugly on unemployment, I think your 40% is a bit over the top. Even during the worst of the Great Depression unemployment topped at 25%.

@three_easy_payments

Please, please please, please.  Let this be the biggest over-estimation I've ever made.
nonoise, I am a very sensitive person, but the constant liberal drivel about how F. U. our response has been doesn't sit well with me. I am an independent, so no bias one way or the other. A month ago no one really saw this hitting the U.S. like it did, arm chair quarterbacking is always 20 20. Otherwise a lot of us would have deep 6'd our stock holdings.
I knew back in January this was going to happen and so did most of the informed in the news gathering media. Tons of people knew.

I'm kind of a news junkie and it wasn't the constant liberal drivel about our F.U. response. The criticism came directly from the center, as well as center left, left, and center right.  It's brainwashing like that, that keeps us divided. Chalk it all down to bothsiderism, which negates the true center's voice and leaves us fighting amongst ourselves, which is the intended result.

As for being an independent, that's kind of like saying one is a libertarian, or a green party member. It's the Swiss answer to everything: hey, I'm the neutral party here and don't really have a position so I'm the reasonable one. 

I appreciate that you apologized as this is some pretty F.U .stuff we're in and we'll all go through it in one form or another. But make no mistake, one side went to great lengths to downplay this and ridicule those who sounded the alarm and now they have the audacity to say they always thought it was dire even though there's a video record of them saying otherwise.

All the best,
Nonoise

 


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As for being an independent, that's kind of like saying one is a libertarian, or a green party member. It's the Swiss answer to everything: hey, I'm the neutral party here and don't really have a position so I'm the reasonable one
 Being a person who came of age in southern CA and Boston, MA in the 60's, maybe being an independent isn't the exact right handle.  But I respectfully disagree with your definition of an independent.  In my view it means I vote for whoever I think is most closely aligned with my beliefs. Most of the time it entails the scientific process of flipping a coin.



I'm as worried about what this is going to mean to small manufacturers.

A lot of the brands we take for granted may be just hanging on. Even B&W for instance has had financial issues of late, covid-19 could very well reshape the landscape.
I was thinking of listing a couple of items on here but I think I'll wait a while, so I guess it's affected it a tiny bit.
Right now about the only place I would consider listing any audio items is USAM due to it being free so not much to lose really.

And maybe eBay as its free to list, has largest global audience by far but you take the biggest hit at the end of close to 13%.

If one can, it’s probably best to hold fire on trying to sell anything if you wish to get a fair price.
jetter-
A month ago no one really saw this hitting the U.S. like it did

Really? And yet TWO MONTHS AGO I was posting EXACTLY this would happen. So if no one really saw this coming either their head was buried deep in denial, or they never saw it because another brain dead denier went and had the post removed. Which they did. Over and over again.

We knew in early January all the required information anyone ever needed to know the outcome: People are contagious even without symptoms, and its deadly. That’s it.

By the end of January, a mere 2 weeks later, we also knew it was airborne and survives on surfaces for up to a week. Airborne means its in every exhaled breath. Combined with surfaces up to a week means every surface anywhere near an infected person becomes infected just by sitting there breathing.

This was all posted by me right here on this site. Where people saw fit to insult me no end, and the more factually accurate the post the faster they had it removed.

You can spout all kinds of absolute nonsense jetter and I will let it slide. But do not even try and say no one saw this coming. Lots of people did. We even told you all about it. You simply refused to listen.
Meh. Shocker that @millercarbon knows all. Seriously, dude. Head to urgent care and get a chill pill.
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So you all admit it is true, you were warned, and chose to dismiss the warnings- and are doing the same now all over again. A study in psychosis.
A certain kind of evil irony is that Rand Paul, the libertarian who voted against the latest bill to lend aid tested positive for the virus and has been regularly working out in the Senate gym and having luncheons with GOP members and staff as well as closed door meetings.

Now they are concerned, as the average age in the Senate is 62.
He'll make sure his government paid medical plan covers him and gets him first in line for a test since he's such a valuable member.

All the best,
Nonoise
Little Randy with the dead squirrel on his head. He Went to Canada to get surgery I thought that was a bit ironic as well.
Hey miller did you warn don the con too? Maybe we wouldn’t be in this trump slump.
Pretty sad whats going on.  Many people are going to quit buying anything other than rent and groceries and still worry about if they and there families will be homeless in 2 months.  its really scary out there for most people. 

And then there are those that have full pantries and not much to worry about.  I’d ask that if this is you, to at least take a few moments each day to think about the people suffering and dyeing and send out a prayer for them and their families.  What’s happening in Italy is so sad.  Also, cherish the day.  Really enjoy your family, your stereo, your cat your dog, your whatever.  Life is precious and life as we know it is extremely comfortable; now is not the time to take it all for granted!
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So, my post at the top of the page got deleted because according to Tammy, "I mentioned the government not doing much early."  Others have posted about the government in this thread but all is ok.  Who reported or deleted me?
All of us carry wounds from our childhood until now. Thinking deeply enough to sort them all out is deep, hard work. So, we patch together a normality that works and hopefully fits in society - and that’s the best we think we can do.

No telling how bad the crisis will be, and how far it will test our honor and humility. I’m hoping and praying I get through this with a sense of grace, caring for my own and others. 
It doesn’t really matter to me why or when, it just is. Past taking precautions, there is nothing left to do except deal with it.

I’m looking forward to a time when audio is our biggest concern.

I sincerely wish you all the best. Be safe and honorable.