COMPRESSION: RIP Retail

  • 17 May 2017
  • staff

This week a popular Twitter meme (below) seemed to echo a recent article from The Atlantic titled “The Great Retail Apocalypse of 2017" and a Moody's Report published by USA Today:  https://usat.ly/2t0ZJQf 

While the latest dire retail closing announcements may suggest this is a new phenomenon, it is symptomatic of much larger issues:  Economic compression, automation, and information.  In economics, complete and perfect information (i.e., Amazon, eBay, internet, etc.)leads to perfect competition and equilibrium prices.  This is good for consumers and the economy because prices and inflation remain low.  However, it can also lead to an economic theory known as Zero Profits where profit margins remain in the black.  Ever find it hard to get ahead and save - even when making money?

In 2006, I wrote and produced a short documentary called COMPRESSION for the first International Documentary Challenge.  COMPRESSION predicted the U.S. economic, financial and housing collapse one year before it occurred.  Ironically, eight years later in 2014, just a few blocks from where scenes from COMPRESSION were shot, I worked as a lawyer on the largest legal case resulting from the mortgage meltdown between the Federal Housing Finance Agency and the biggest mortgage lenders during the boom - Bank of America, Countrywide Financial, and Merrill Lynch: The Credit Suisse bank heist of 2016.

COMPRESSION led me to dig deeper into the factors controlling global markets and the corruption that has become commonplace, leading to even greater financial disasters, including the stunning 2016 Credit Suisse bank heist (delisting oil stocks after the oil crash). This was the largest act of financial corruption ever and one of the most under-reported stories that the U.S. Department of Justice should investigate, beginning and ending with the question:  Where’s the money, Lebowski?    

Watch the full version of COMPRESSION here:

I will be writing much more about this film and the repercussions of the Credit Suisse disaster – so stay tuned.  Share your thoughts about whether retail is dying, dead or just in a re-invention period!

Paul