Americans seem to be getting a better deal from Lee Valley.

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You see patriarch wasn't really complaining about slow shipping, he was just sorta pointing it out. Not really a complaint, just an observation and a suggestion how to resolve it in his favor.<g>
Well then I'm no longer complaining about Canadians getting the shaft on Lee Valley prices either. I'm just pointing it out, making an observation.<g>
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Things get to Texas quick enough!
Grant
"James T. Kirby" wrote:

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IF I had a complaint, it wasn't that shipping was slow. It was that I couldn't get instant gratification.
Shipping has so far always been as promised, and very reasonably priced.
Were I to order by telephone, and not by the web site, I likely COULD have gotten faster shipping methods. But I didn't, I don't, and I still think they, LV, do a great job.
Patriarch
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It is clear that Lee Valley has decided to charge higher prices to Canadian consumers harder because the Canadian market is simply less competitive than the US market. I am a Canadian living in the US and longtime Lee Valley buyer/supporter. When the 2004/2005 catalog came out, I was struck by the very high spread between US and Canadian pricing. An example is the Canadian-made Veritas Low Angle Block Plane - $99 in the US $139 in Canada (Implied exchange rate of $1.404). In June 2004 the US dollar was $1.32 Canadian, 8% lower than the spread implied by the catalogue differentials. The Dollar hasn't closed at $1.40 since August 2003. Hard to imagine the catalogue pricing is based on some proprietary view of future exchange rate changes, but Lee Valley could hedge away currency risk in any case.
If you really want to see how hard Canadians are getting boned, check out Bosch appliances, or, Tegs tools prices on most things, but Fein tools in particular, for a cold douche. By the way, I don't believe in the concept of "fair" prices. Companies are in the game to maximize profits, if Canadians have fewer options, it follows that, in general (not General, btw) they will face higher pricing.
John

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It may seem clear to you but it is not to me. Could be other reasons. Perhaps the cost of getting the goods to Canada is higher than getting them to the US shipping warehouse. I don't know if any tarriff or duty is involved. I do know we ship a lot of goods to CA at US prices and the customer is paying more in total than the same thing sold in the US by the time he pays duty.
I have enough to keep me busy running my own business so I'm not going to try to run Lee Valley and make policy for them also.
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There is not much room for interpretation here. The item in question, as I stated, is made in Canada. I chose the block plane as an example to isolate everything but the exchange rate and any remaining arbitrary cost differential. If anything, it should be more expensive in the States, since it is made in Canada. Seems unlikely it could cost less to get to the good to Canada when it is made there. I am not making a moral statement, nor a political one, just pointing out the economic reality driving the price difference.

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yeahbutt. you are comparing todays's exchange rate to pricing that was set on an exchange rate that was probably set some time ago. Rob already told us that they set that in June, but that may be '03 in this case once you figure in the lead times for catalog production.
According to the Bank of Canada:
http://www.bank-banque-canada.ca/en/exchange-look.htm
Today: 1.23 June 1, 2003 1.3685 June 1, 2004 1.3695
So basically we're talking about a 3% difference between their pricing and the exchange rate at the time the prices were set.
I just don't see where the there is a conpiracy to screw the locals here.
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On 29 Oct 2004 07:46:54 -0700, snipped-for-privacy@surfree.com (JohnD) wrote:

Robin has made it perfectly clear Canadians pay more because the market supports it. He also made it clear he can't lower the Canadian price because he need the higher profits to subsidize the lower prices he charges Americans.
It's business. If Lee Valley can become a big player in the US they don't really need Canadian customers.
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snipped-for-privacy@surfree.com (JohnD) wrote in

Does the scale and geographic diversity of the market have no effect? Fixed costs, specific to the country, spread over a smaller sales base?
Recall also, in the US, Lee Valley ONLY has the web/catalog sales model to support, without bricks and mortar retail.
Patriarch
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One example - Dewalt 15ga finish nailer; in the US sold as low as $159 USD ($195 CAD), $399 in Canada. I can see how shipping may add $10 - $15 extra cost, but why is Dewalt charging double?
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Subsidized health care? Technical support lines in French Canadian? Local content regulation?
Doing business across ANY border is a puzzle. This is one reason that NAFTA was proposed, and, in some form, instituted. Notice just how easily that project went together.
Notice how almost all threads devolve to politics?
Patriarch
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On Fri, 29 Oct 2004 03:50:58 GMT, patriarch

More like because it's likely imported from the US into Canada but not made in the US, a duty is charged by Canada.
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Patriarch
You devolved the thread to politics. I spoke of pricing decisions. You brought up NAFTA, etc. Nice to be so self-aware.

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snipped-for-privacy@surfree.com (JohnD) wrote in

John, Understanding pricing decisions in different, yet related and connected economies is inherently political.
And it seems only in contentious election cycles that politics is a perjorative.
Politics is the very messy process whereby people make decisions on how they will deal with a complex, uncertain world. Thank whatever belief system you espouse that we have those options.
Patriarch
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Subsidized health care is very attractive to US or other foreign companies setting up in Canada. The cost of the most expensive employee benefit is largely paid for by the Canadian public.
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Health care, in Ontario at least, is paid for by the employer. Nice hypothesis, too bad you don't have facts to back it.
Mike
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Funny, I live in Ontario, I don't even *have* an employer, yet I get Health Care covered. Two explanations:
- You are dead wrong or - You two are talking about different things. "Health care" from a "plan" such as is offered by an employer, is additional health care which covers such things as dentistry, travel coverage, a portion of eyewear and prescriptions (especially). These things are not covered by the government. The government plan covers operations, doctors visits, etc; mostly everything except the ones I listed. Travel coverage is a bit weird and too complex to go into here. The employer does *not* pay for this care; it is out of conventional gov revenue.
PK
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Third alternative - you don't understand.
OHIP is payed for by employers. Unemployed are still covered. Self employed have (had?) a loophole that let them off the hook as well. At one time the OHIP costs were split 50/50 employer/employee and unemployed had to pay directly. Now it is 100% employer and the unemployed get coverage regardless.
Mike
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What? No, it most certainly is not. *You* have some misunderstanding; employers don't even get close to paying full OHIP costs. Where on earth did you get such information?
PK
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You're right - I left out the federal part (the ever declining part until recently) and whatever comes out of general revenue. However, to the earlier poster's comment, the employer does not get off scott free. There are costs to the employer, though likely lower than that paid to private insurers by US employers.
Mike
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