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The true price of those blue jeans

Those jeans of yours were made in Bangladesh and traveled a long way before being marked up by 300% or more.

By Smart Spending Editor Jun 17, 2013 6:45PM
Call it the calculations of the traveling pants. Those jeans you're wearing made a long journey from where they were manufactured in Bangladesh before they made it into the shop you bought them in. And the price you're paying? Let's just say it's a pretty hefty mark-up.

Reuters delved into the manufacturing process and came up with some alarming numbers.

When a factory in Bangladesh receives an order for a pair of jeans, materials and labor together cost about US $8.42. Once the jeans are made, packaged, trucked to the port of Chittagong from Dhaka, 153 miles away, and shipped to the USA (a trip that takes about 30 days), the cost has jumped to about $12.29. That includes U.S. Import dues and the cost of repackaging and trucking to retail stores throughout the U.S.

What do you pay? An average of $38.87, according to Reuters. That's more than 400% over the initial cost of manufacturing, or about two weeks wages for the workers who made them.

Watch the video for more details.



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25Comments
Jun 18, 2013 9:38PM
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Maybe you should buy Round House Jeans from Shawnee, OK
Jun 17, 2013 8:32PM
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Most Americans won't fight for better wages here so you know most won't fight for other folks living in another country. The Decline of Humans continues.
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RALEIGH DENIM, based in Raleigh NC.  American Made...Support AMERICAN MADE!
Jun 18, 2013 12:13PM
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I buy my jeans online from Texas Jeans.

Jun 27, 2013 1:49PM
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Americans haven't seen a true jean since the late 80's.....only the rich have access to 'em....the others...no matter how much you pay for them.....they not the real thing....!!.....you being bamboozled by the garment industry....in india .....or wherever.....jeans for sheep.....jejejeje
Jun 27, 2013 2:05PM
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Most Americans won't fight for better wages here 

Dave add to that Corporate America's need to make more MONEY, the best way they can, getting the labor for the cheapest....Whatever happened to all those people screaming about "Made in America", who had their chance while bush was in. And their Senators/Congressmen ( GOP type) are friends with the Chamber of Commerce, it's an uphill battle. But aren't you glad this country elected an idiot like bush to pave the way for Corporate America to shuffle off Jobs for us, so that they can CAPITALIZE! Oh, wait now I'm sounding anti-capitalist.....
Jun 24, 2013 3:05PM
Jun 27, 2013 3:13PM
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Awww....but "Whatever the market will bear.." is SUCH a sound economic strategy!
Jun 27, 2013 6:15PM
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If we could manufacture them in the U.S. we could save on shipping and import fees thus they might be cheaper.
Jun 28, 2013 9:58AM
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Folks, a mark-up of 5 to 1 is typical between manufacturing cost and retail price for ALL products.  So, if you develop a new product and it can't be built for a cost of 20% of what it should sell for, it will never become a big seller.  That kind of mark-up is needed to cover the costs and profits of all the steps between manufacturing and the retail store.
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This is inaccurate as it does not take into account the costs/overhead of managing and operating a business - from packaging to shipping to marketing and mass overstock. As consumer expectations become higher for lower prices from reports about mark-ups like this, they should not forget the true risks and costs of running a business along with all the jobs provided from Bangladesh to the U.S. By the way, I do not work for a large multinational like H&M but I do work for a smaller retail outlet and know how hard it is to develop designs.  
Jun 28, 2013 12:28PM
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I buy my Jeans at Costco, inexpensive and best Jeans I have ever had, comfy too
Jun 28, 2013 12:30PM
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The Costco Jeans are better than any other Jeans and only $ 14.99

so article is full of bs

Jun 28, 2013 6:54AM
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The point is that a lot of the clasical products found in the stores these days are fakes.....nothing but overpriced fakes.....is almost impossible to a sweat shirt , unless you pay ten times its value and once you look a it close.....is not cotton.....the trend is alarming ....for the common folks....
Jun 27, 2013 6:38PM
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So a typical retail margin is 50%, meaning the manufacturer sells the jeans to the retail store for ~$19.50 if the retailer sells at full price for ~$39.  In other words, the manufacturer only makes about $7 for that pair of jeans.  If that pair of jeans was made in the US, paying $15/hour to someone who can make 3 pairs of jeans per hour, that would cut the profit margin for the manufacturer to about $2 per pair of jeans - actually less given the pay for facilities and supervisors in the US, plus benefits for all involved.  A manufacturer would probably lose money on each pair of jeans made in the US if they sold them to retailers at $19.50 each.
Jun 27, 2013 3:02PM
Jun 27, 2013 3:14PM
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In the other story on Social Security, which MSN isn't allowing comments on, judges are being pressured to give out SS disability handouts to people who don't qualify to "clear up the backlog".....

Democrats are the sloppiest, most incompetent, most loose with money, most wasteful people in the history of the planet.......who are the retarded imbeciles who want these morons to create new programs after their record on the programs they already created?

They would waste 50% of the budget from a government hot dog stand.  Who votes for these liberals?

People on SS "disability" up 44% in the last ten years, says the article-----another complete fraud and scam from our worthless Welfare State.  The population's up less than 10% in that time period.
Jun 18, 2013 7:05AM
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Gives the Libs something to whine about while they continue to wear the jeans.
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