Circuit City: The Frenzy Has Passed!

By  |  Tuesday, January 20, 2009 at 5:20 pm

Circuit CityI happened to be running errands today near the local Circuit City that had an amazingly long line of bargain-hunters waiting to get into its going-out-of-business sale on Sunday, so I popped by to see how the story was faring after a couple more days of liquidation. Once again, I took a few photos using my iPhone’s trusty-but-blurry camera.

Sunday’s snaking line of shoppers had dwindled to…well, it had disappeared. Once again, it was possible to stroll into the store:

Circuit City No Line

Inside, there were quite a few customers milling about. But most products were still marked down by only ten percent, and that still didn’t seem to be nearly enough to send anyone on a wanton shopping spree. At least I saw a few items marked down by thirty percent–which is, for me at least, the minimum discount required to make me raise an eyebrow and reach for my wallet:

Circuit City Game Accessory Discounts

All in all, though, it felt like word had reached deal-seekers that Circuit City’s bad luck is not anyone’s hugely lucky break just yet. The clearest sign: During my brief visit to the store, there wasn’t a single soul at the main checkout buying anything. Here you can see the only clerk wandering away from the register:

Circuit City Checkout

At some point, the companies handling Circuit City’s liquidation will be forced to knock everything down by thirty or forty percent or more. I’ll be interested to see how long it takes, and whether there will still be any good stuff left on the shelves by then…


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13 Comments For This Post

  1. Patrick Moorhead Says:

    I hope this doesn’t turn into the 2 year, going out of business sale that a local rug dealer has been having.

  2. Dave Zatz Says: says they expect to complete liquidation of physical stores by the end of March. I seem to recall CompUSA’s liquidation took a month or 6 weeks, with another 10% or whatever off each week. Never found anything at a price I wanted to buy. Maybe CC will be different… I’ll check in a few days.

  3. Harry McCracken Says:

    I kept going by my local CompUSA and being startled to find it still conducting its sale, weeks after I’d assumed it was a goner. At the end, I -almost- bought a Flip video camera for something like 30 percent off. But not quite…


  4. Dave Barnes Says:

    No one who reads this blog/website will buy anything at Clueless City.
    Everyone here knows EXACTLY how much to pay for an item.
    But, the liquidators will sell everything at much higher prices than WE would pay as most of the consumer base is clueless.

  5. digitalcameras Says:

    I can personally attest to the fact that the “liquidation prices” are anything but, thus far. They’ll likely drop them as time goes on, to unload everything by the end of March, but everything good will be gone by then. I went to CC on day one of the “liquidation”, and I’ve seen cheaper prices during regular CC sales. Lame.

  6. Brandon Says:

    Just in case everyones forgotten, a liquidation sale by definition was never inteneded to be ‘cheap’. It’s simply a court-ordered selling of assets so as to quickly repay creditors and (with luck) share holders. Quite literally, it turns non-liquid assets into cash (aka ‘liquid’). In fact, creditors (in this case the vendors) would have very real grounds for legal action if Circuit City’s liquidators turned this into a fire-sale, essentially robbing companies that are still in business of profits just so that we can walk out with some 60% BluRay discs… I thought that was just common knowledge, but let me know if I’ve missed something. ;). If more retailers go under like they are predicting, it will be important for the consuming public to remember that ‘liquidation’ is just a boring accounting term, not the marker of a shopping bonanza.

  7. Ryan Says:

    Brandon is correct, liquidation is just a term. Everything is set at MSRP and discounted from there. If any of you vultures had bothered to shop at Circuit City before it was going out of business, you would have gotten much better deals.

  8. Dave Mackey Says:

    On MLK Day, I went into a Circuit City that had just begun its liquidation – one other near me had been already earmarked for early closing – and was quite underwhelmed. I believe it was 10% off everything in the store, 20% off CD’s and DVD’s, and 30% off all audio and video cables. (Wha?) I was hoping to find some more Nunchuks for the family’s Wii, but they didn’t have any. It seemed like the greatest interest in the store was in the digital cameras, of which there were already a number of low-end models out of stock.

    The fact is that liquidation sales are really the greatest test of supply and demand pricing – it’s almost like eBay in reverse. How LITTLE are you willing to pay for something?

  9. chrismcdevitt Says:

    That solitary cashier walking away from the only register is nothing new at Circuit City. It’s been like that for years, despite how many people were in the store and how many wanted to purchase an item. This is why they’re going out of business

  10. racy_rick Says:

    They probably raised prices 50% and then dropped them 30%. I’m sure anything of any value will be sold to another company. They were scammers to begin with and they will die being ruthless scammers.

    Good Riddance!

  11. audiofriend Says:

    Instead of waiting for liquidation sales on last year’s products, Circuit City car audio customers should check out Car Toys. They can get expert service and selection on the latest car audio and video products by visiting any Car Toys location. Find the stores nearest you at:

  12. Linda Says:

    Until it’s 70-80% off, I won’t bother…

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